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Clean up after severe flooding-- crews say it could take a month to get back to normal

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Communities across Southwest Virginia are beginning to clean up after the weekend's severe flooding.

Big Stone Gap saw almost five inches of rain in just two days.

Today, crews from the Parks and Rec. department are picking up trash, shoveling out excess water, and bulldozing side walk paths in the an effort to clean up after the Powell River flooded the town.

There was a call for voluntary evacuations over the weekend for residents in low-lying areas.

"The fire department came around 12:30 p.m. to tell us to evacuate," said Big Stone Gap resident Joann Huff.

Huff decided to stay at home and ride out the storm.

"We saw the water getting higher. Then it would go down after the rain stopped, and then come back up again," said Huff.

Residents who live next to the river are used to flooding after a heavy rain.

"It flooded most of the yards around here-- all the way down to the end of the road. All the yards down there were flooded. The river rose to as high as the road," said resident Steven Davis.

Parks near the river are still sopping wet. Crews from the Parks and Rec. department say it could take a month before the fields are back to normal.

"The park is a beautiful location for walking in the summer and spring. But because it's near the river, when it floods, a lot of damage is done to the park," said Davis.

Even though the fields need more time for repair, the park's walking trails are now re-open.


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