By Karla Kelly
FOR THE DIGBY COURIER
Weymouth escaped major flood damage Friday, but there was still need for clean-up in several downtown businesses after the Sissiboo River spilled over onto Main Street during the new moon high tide.
The noontime flood, coupled with blizzard conditions, stalled traffic on both sides of the downtown area as the quickly rising tide seeped into street level buildings causing water damage.
Weymouth Mercantile employee Shannon Hersey said when she arrived for work at 12:30 p.m., there was still a foot of water in the store.
“Some boxes we had for storage were damaged and the rugs got soaked, but most of the stock was on shelves above the water,” said Hersey. “Once the water went down, it was clean-up time.”
Floreen Brittain, who operates her hair salon in the same building, said she was unable to get to the shop because the building was surrounded by water.
“Everything near or on the floor was soaked,” she said. “Two storage containers that held some of my hairstyling equipment had been knocked over when the water rushed in and some of it is damaged or ruined.”
Inside the Credit Union office, Gary Gidney was vacuuming water-soaked rugs.
“The building was totally surrounded by the flood water and because it has no basement but sits on cribwork, water can enter it easily,” said Gidney. “Water damage is hidden in the walls and we’ll have to wait and see what all has to be repaired.”
In a ground level apartment at the rear of the Credit Union building, Diane Amero was attempting to make sense of the mess.
Nearly two feet of water seeped into her apartment forcing the heat, water and power to be shut off.
“The water went right over the tops of my rubber boots and there I was trying to mop up what I could with my wet feet and my pants soaked to my knees.”
Amero said much of her furniture and personal belongings were soaked or ruined, as well as her daughter Stephanie’s possessions.
“This morning, I just sat down in the middle of it all and cried, I felt so bad,” said Amero. “This is the fifth time my apartment has flooded and this is the worst of them all.”
Across the street, Weymouth Diner sat in darkness on Saturday.
Tammy Burns who operates the restaurant said they had decided to close at lunchtime Friday because of the blizzard.
“We were getting ready to lock up, when Randy Sabine knocked on the door and told us the Sissiboo was flooding,” said Burns. “Water started rushing in behind the diner and by the time we got to our truck out back, the water was up to the wheel wells.”
Burns said water came in through the back of the diner, into the kitchen and a bit into the dining area.
“I’ve mopped up and there appears to be little damage. I will check out the stove and fryer to make sure all is good to open tomorrow (Sunday).”
Although a great deal of water rushed in under the lower end of Sissiboo Home Hardware, very little got into the store itself.
No damage was reported at the Weymouth service center although gas pumps were surrounded by salt water.
Debbie Brown, an employee at the Pharmasave Drug Store, said she watched the tide come up while she was working at the front of the store.
“The tide flowed in slowly at first and then came in a rush,” said Brown. “The drugstore, garage and hardware store looked like islands.”
Brown said the elevation of the drugstore prevented any flooding, although the water came up as far as the cement walkway in front of the store.
“The water was fairly deep in places, but once the tide receded plows were out clearing away all the chunks of ice left behind,” Brown said. “We haven’t had flood water like this in the village for a number of years and we got off relatively easy this time.”