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Montco, Delco Officials See Irene’s Damage As Widespread, Lee’s As Severe

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Michelle Durham Michelle Durham
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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - The Delaware Valley was socked by natural disasters in the month of August — not only did we experience an earthquake, but we suffered through Hurricane Irene followed quickly by Tropical Storm Lee.

Two local officials say that Irene’s damage was more widespread but Lee’s was more severe in the areas it hit.

Scott Mickalonis, deputy director of emergency management for the Montgomery County Department of Public Safety, says they saw similar damage with both storms, but “we saw more flash flooding with Tropical Storm Lee.   With Hurricane Irene we saw more widespread flooding and flash flooding throughout most of the eastern section of the county.  Again, with Tropical Storm Lee, it was very confined to the areas that are normally hit with flash flooding.”

Specifically Whitemarsh, Cheltenham, Whitpain, and Ambler Borough.

Delaware County director of emergency services Ed Truitt agrees that the damage from Lee was more hit-or-miss.

“Hurricane Irene, most of the damage was done at state highways,” Truitt told KYW Newsradio today.  “With Tropical Storm Lee we seem to have a microcell sort of hanging over Haverford and Upper Darby, bringing down a tremendous amount of water,” into Darby Boro and Colwyn Boro.

Truitt says a disaster recovery center will be open later this week so he can get an idea of how many people were affected.

Mickalonis says Montgomery County residents should report all storm damage to their municipality as FEMA assesses whether to offer federal assistance to those affected by Lee.

Mickalonis adds for those living in flood-prone areas, being prepared all the time is a necessity — as is keeping storm drains free of debris.

Reported by Michelle Durham, KYW Newsradio 1060

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