Rain Floods Aiken Businesses

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August 11, 2005
All this rain hasn’t been good for some business owners in Aiken County. On Wednesday, almost an inch and a half of rain fell on parts of the county leaving some business owners with a big mess. As News 12 reports, this isn’t the first time this has happened and now some are calling for the city to take action.

Water flowed down the drains on Richland Avenue late Wednesday afternoon, but not fast enough. Outside Kalmia Plaza, water gathers deep enough to sink this white car and rush into nearby businesses.

“The water came up over the sidewalk and eventually covered the entire parking lot and we had about six inches of water in the building,” said Charles Foster, Southern Delights.

The rain is gone, but business owners are left with a mess on the floor. They’re in for a day of cleanup.

At Southern Delights, catering shelves of canned goods had to be washed off. Today’s barbeque was cooked in a different kitchen.

“Business has got to go on. I’ve got lunches and catering events everyday,” Foster said.

At Maze’s Detail Shop, water has gone from cleaning up to making a mess. All of their carpet must be replaced. This has happened before to both businesses. They’ve called the city and nothing has been done.

“We call them constantly and tell them about it,” Jerome Mays said.

“The drains are clear. The drains are working, but the capacity when you get three inches of rain in less than an hour it just didn’t have anywhere to go,” said Don Sprawls, Aiken’s Mayor Pro Tem.

Aiken’s Mayor Pro Tem Don Sprawls checked on the businesses. Sprawls says he’s going to try to get bigger drains installed here.

“It would be a major undertaking, but it looks like something we’re eventually going to have to do,” Sprawls said.

That’s hopeful news to businessmen trying to sweep up and go on.