WEATHER

D.C. flooding: D.C. area soaked as heavy rains bring flooding

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Driving rain tore away large chunks of earth on the very edge of a busy highway. The threat of Route 301 collapsing prompted authorities to shut down the southbound lanes through La Plata

While engineers tried to come up with a strategy to shore up 301, other crews scrambled to restore washed out roads. The rain tore up more than twenty five of them in Charles County alone.

The sole route in and out of the Clifton on Potomac subdivision fell victim to a raging creek. Some residents found themselves trapped

“Couldn't get a car through there or a truck or anything,” said Charles County resident Glen Smith.

Residents loaded up on bottled water and hoped for a quick return of service but not more downpours.

Bowie resident Diana Arnold can't even begin the cleanup of her basement as she's still trying to drain what's left of the four feet of standing water she found at 4 Thursday morning.

The drain outside her door clogged, leaving the rains from the torrential downpour overwhelming her sump pump. Her locked steel door was no match for the pressure building behind it. As four feet of muddy water came flooding in, it took out entire appliances.

A four foot high water line reminding her of the instant destruction it brought and the damage that can't be undone.

“A lot of my memories are going to be swept away as well so I think that hurts the most,” she said. “I mean of course the money hurts but thank god I have a job.”

Heavy downpours also bring out potholes on streets.

“Right now the roads are really terrible,” said cab driver Abdul Conteh, who has been driving here for 25 years and says potholes chew into profits. “It costs us a lot of money to fix our cars - alignments and tires.”

The District Department of Transportation reported more than a dozen pothole complaints in the past few days. Its policy is to try to fill them within 72 hours, and some have already been repaired.

When the damage to a car is done, fixing it is expensive. Rob Steele, who owns "Town car repair," says repairs for pothole damage can run has high as the $1,000 he quoted a customer yesterday.

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