Business experiences flashback to the '60s following flash flood

Business experiences flashback to the '60s following flash flood
Ashlock Tire at 11 a.m. (Source: KAIT)
Ashlock Tire at 11 a.m. (Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
(Source: KAIT)
Water line shows how high flood waters were (Source: KAIT)
Water line shows how high flood waters were (Source: KAIT)
Picture of '60's flood (Source: KAIT)
Picture of '60's flood (Source: KAIT)

WALNUT RIDGE, AR (KAIT) - Flood waters brought a 1960's flashback to one Region 8 business owner.

Terry Spradlin of Ashlock Tire in Walnut Ridge knew something must be wrong when he received an early-morning phone call.

"He said 'No, you don't understand we really got trouble'," Spradlin said.

The trouble was 7 inches of water inside his shop that Spradlin and his crew walked in on Friday morning.

By 9 a.m., water had already started to recede.

"It's a good 3 or 4 inches up," Spradlin said.

This was something he wouldn't believe had happened before if it weren't for a picture of proof.

"1968 or '69. Yeah, it was up to the bottom of these windows," Spradlin said.

A photo showing what a car dealership back then looked like after a similar flash flood.

A sight nearly identical when compared side by side.

Walnut Ridge Mayor Charles Snapp said he had crews out at 3:30 a.m. checking drainage ditches.

Snapp said unfortunately, you can't avoid these weather events, but you can react to them.

"We are going to clean everything up, we are going to continue with dredging the ditches that are the primary source on the outside the city controls," Snapp said.

While an inconvenience, Spradlin said it's no one's fault.

"There's no way anybody could have known that this was gonna do it in another 40 years," Spradlin said.

The city plans to continue working on the drainage system, but it won't be a quick solution.

"There's no single answer that's going to make it work," Snapp said.

Friday morning, Spradlin was optimistic they would be back to work by noon.

Thanks to the sun, he was right.

By 11 a.m., Ashlock Tire was nearly completely dried, and Spradlin's crew worked to clear out any excess water with shop vacs and brooms.

Spradlin said this was a freak weather event that he hopes he doesn't see for another 40 years.

Copyright 2016 KAIT. All rights reserved.

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