Sally puts grocer in deep water

Published 8:02 pm Tuesday, September 22, 2020

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With at least four feet of water inside the building at East Brewton’s Piggly Wiggly, workers had plenty to do over the weekend to prepare for re-opening.

Cindi Lundy, store manager, said the crew is working to get the store operational to be able to serve the customers again.

“It’s just been a mess,” Lundy said. “There was about four feet of water in the store, more at the back than in the front, but it was everywhere. We had so much to do just to get into the store.”

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The floodwaters rose quickly Wednesday evening and into the night making it impossible to even check on the store. East Brewton police officers were station about a block away from the parking lot entrance to the store and kept the public at bay until early Friday morning.

“We were amazed we had power when we got to the store,” Lundy said. “Even with power, everything in our coolers was lost since the water flooded all of it.”

Piggly Wiggly District Manager Lester Hildreth was in town Saturday morning to lend a hand to the employees at the local grocery store.

“I’m from Geneva so I’ve seen flooding before,” Hildreth said. “But, this is a mess. Everything touched by the flood waters will have to be thrown away. After cleaning out all of the damaged goods and cleaning up, the health inspector will come in and make sure that everything is cleaned properly and ready to be put back together.”

Lundy said that getting the store cleaned and properly sanitized will take some time.

“When you think about just how much stuff we’ve had to throw away, you realize it certainly takes some time,” Lundy said. “Even after that, we’ve got to get everything cleaned so that we can pass a health inspection. We’re on a priority list with ServPro and we know they are being worked hard right now, too. But we are confident that we can get everything taken care of and get back to doing business soon.”

Soon for Lundy and the rest of the crew at Piggly Wiggly looks like a few more days.

“As of right now, we are hoping to have everything cleaned and ready to open the doors maybe by the weekend,” Lundy said. “We may run into some things that slow us down a little, but we are doing everything we can to get back to serving our customers.”

The crews were able to move some products to higher locations to save as much as possible, Lundy said. But some items such as fresh meats, dairy and produce were a loss for the store.

“It will take a little time for us to restock to a have what we normally have in those departments,” Lundy said. “But we have some great suppliers and I know that we can get back to serving our customers well.”