Weeks later, Sawyerville still recovering from tornado

Hale County’s Sawyerville community is still recovering after heavy storms and an EF2 tornado damaged a large chunk of the area Feb. 3.

Construction work including major roof repairs are taking longer than usual, but that’s because workers can’t work when there’s severe weather. West Alabama has been dealing with a deluge of severe weather, and more is on the way, said Hale County Emergency Management Director Russell Weeden.

“When it’s inclement weather we don’t want anyone up on the roofs and whatnot,” Weeden said. “It puts us behind on trying to get some of these new roofs on.”

A total of 190 blue tarps have been draped on homes suffering roof damage so their interiors don’t get damaged further.

It might seem like Hale County residents can’t catch a break, but here’s some good news for anyone looking to stock up on severe weather supplies:

The Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday begins Feb. 25 and ends Feb. 27. During the holiday, you can stock up tax-free on severe weather supplies that cost less than $60. In addition, generators costing $1,000 or less can be purchased without the state’s 4% sales tax over the holiday weekend. Items eligible for the tax holiday include:

  • Common battery types
  • Cellphone chargers and batteries
  • Portable self- or battery-powered radios, including NOAA weather radios
  • Flashlights, lanterns and emergency glow sticks
  • Tarps and plastic sheeting
  • Ground anchor systems including bungee cords, rope or tie-down kits
  • Duct tape
  • Plywood, window film or materials designed to protect window coverings
  • Nonelectric food or water storage such as coolers
  • Nonelectric can openers
  • Self-contained first aid kits
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Smoke and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Gas or diesel fuel tanks/canisters
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