Md. apartments condemned weeks after 'derecho' - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Md. apartments condemned weeks after 'derecho'

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  • Md. apartments condemned weeks after 'derecho'

    Md. apartments condemned weeks after 'derecho'

    Wednesday, June 12 2013 2:52 PM EDT2013-06-12 18:52:00 GMT
    Nearly two weeks after the derecho storm that knocked power out for about half the households in the Washington, D.C. area, an apartment building was condemned as uninhabitable.
    Nearly two weeks after the derecho storm that knocked power out for about half the households in the Washington, D.C. area, an apartment building was condemned as uninhabitable.
RIVERDALE PARK, Md. -

Nearly two weeks after the derecho storm that knocked power out for about half the households in the Washington, D.C. area, an apartment building was condemned as uninhabitable.

Residents at one of the two Riverdale Towers buildings in Riverdale Park, Md., were ordered out on Wednesday evening.

By dinnertime Thursday, however, about two-thirds of the residents were told they could return.

Occupants say the roof of their building was patched following the violent thunderstorm of June 29th, but when a local thunderstorm dropped a lot of rain on Monday, apartments on most floors of the building were flooded.

"The water [was] coming through the ceiling," according to resident Placid D'Costa. "And the carpet [was] totally wet."

Someone called the fire department on Wednesday and county building inspectors soon followed. On Wednesday evening, authorities affixed "condemned" stickers on the front door, and began ordering residents to leave. There are 65 apartments in the building, according to county officials.

Ronnie Gill, the Director of Emergency Management for Prince George's County, said the concern was water possibly mixing with electricity. Both water and electrical service to the building was shut off.

Some families were given only an hour to evacuate.

An emergency shelter was quickly set up at Bladensburg High School. 27 people stayed there Wednesday night. Evacuated residents say building managers also offered them discounts at a local hotel.

Back at the condemned building at 2:15 p.m., a shipment of roofing materials arrived.

And remediation crews worked all day inside apartments on lower floors.

It may take days at least for the remaining 22 or so apartments to be inhabitable. According to Emergency Management Director Gill, some of the remaining apartments don't even have drywall standing in them.


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