East Brewton begins long recovery

Published 8:24 am Wednesday, June 30, 2021

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The residents in pockets of destruction in East Brewton will be cleaning up for weeks and maybe even months to come.

East Brewton Mayor Terry Clark said the work to be done to recover from last weekend’s tornado is a daunting task.

“We’ve put two trucks to work hauling debris,” Clark said. “They are rolling eight to 10 hours a day and will be running seven days a week until we can get things done. We are hauling as much as we can to get the debris cleaned up.”

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Clark said he knows that residents are managing difficult situations, but asked that they help with debris cleanup by working as quickly as possible.

“I know things are still rough,” Clark said. “But, we are asking that everyone get their debris to the road as fast as they can to help us out. That way we will have a good idea of what we have to haul away. We want to get the streets cleaned up as quickly as we can.”

Clark also said that residents are asked to separate the debris as much as possible since some things will need to be deposed of in various locations.

“If at all possible, we are asking that people separate their debris,” Clark said. “Limbs and tree debris in one pile, metal in another and lumber in another pile. I know this is hard work, but it would make our work go quicker.”

A visit from Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey last week, along with representatives from Alabama Emergency Management Agency, left Clark with little hope of receiving help with the expenses in the city.

“I’m not sure we will get any help,” Clark said. “A lot of things play into that, and right now, we just don’t know how that will play out.”

Clark also reminded residents to be mindful of who they hire for cleanup and for repairs to homes.

“There are some people out there that may be taking advantage of folks needing help,” Clark said. “Every legitimate business will have a city license to be here. We are asking that people make sure they have a city license before getting in too deep. We certainly don’t want our residents to have issues with cleanup and repair after they have already suffered because of the tornado.”

Clark also offered thanks and praise to those who stepped up to make the recovery process run smoothly early after the storm.

“Alabama Power Company was everywhere,” Clark said. “they had about 30 trucks show up right away to help get the lines off the streets so that our people could get in and start clearing the roadways. During those hard first days, David’s Catfish opened up when they wouldn’t normally have been open to make sure our workers and families would get a hot meal. I can’t thank those people enough for what they did.”