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Lumberport Family Still Cleaning Up From Heavy Rainfalls

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LUMBERPORT -

A family in Lumberport, West Virginia, is still cleaning up after periods of heavy rain, including a heavy burst that hit the area in February 2013. 

But the Ayers family has more than Mother Nature to blame. It said a faulty culvert is causing it some major headaches.

"The culvert on this end doesn't disperse the same amount of water as the culvert on this side. It clogs up with heavy rains and causes flooding," said April Ayers, landlord of a property in Lumberport.

Ayers said the culvert dates back to the 1960s and in 1995, a convenience store was built on top of it. It's now the home of a 711 store. Ayers and her father believe that caused the culvert to collapse, giving the water nowhere to go but in the front yard of a property that they lease out to another family.

"This is the result of two floodings; first a few weeks ago when we had massive storms that rolled through and dumped all water. Hadn't finished up cleanup from that and we got flooded a second time," Ayers said.

The water and mud has reached ceiling level in the garage. It has left residue, mold and water damage.

The Ayers family is doing what it can to clean up the mess and that includes bringing out heavy-duty farm equipment and large-sized shovels.

"Bring in farm tractor to shovel out the driveway so tenants could get in and out, but won't dry up enough to get mud out of yard. This is flood water, it is contaminated," Ayers said.

Even with all that work, the tenant is unable to make it out the front door. The tenant is using the fire escape at the front of the building to get in and out of the apartment. Ayers said there is a three-foot drop at the end of the fire escape. She believes this is dangerous because the tenant is pregnant.

Ayers said crews attempted to stabilize the culvert, but she believes it made the problem worse.

"Lined the culvert with rhubarb and concrete. Caused the diameter to be even smaller," Ayers said.

711 denied our request for comment.