FORT WORTH — "It's a nightmare," said Kenneth Kirkwood, standing in a hallway looking at what's left of his home in Fort Worth's Arlington Heights neighborhood.
"We built this starting in 2011, finished in 2012," he said.
Then, last month, it flooded.
His wood floors are ripped up, several inches of sheet rock are torn down, and he and his wife are totally moved out. She is six months' pregnant, and they are temporarily living in a hotel, looking for an apartment, while their home undergoes months of repairs.
But on Wednesday night, Kirkwood visited their vacated residence because of what is in the forecast.
"Everyone in the neighborhood is panicking about one, possibly two inches of rain," he said. "Dark clouds come overhead and you just start panicking. So I'm probably going to stay here tonight; I bought a sump pump and some flood barriers, they won't be here 'til tomorrow. I'll put them in front of the doors and the garage and hopefully we don't get impacted again."
He said no one told him the Western Avenue property where they chose to build their home had flooded. He's angry the city didn't warn them.
"I would have built higher," he said. "I would’ve built higher... or maybe not built at all."
Fort Worth city workers spent Wednesday afternoon putting together temporary barricades that could be used to block intersections should another flash flood event occur. They also filled sandbags that would be used to keep those barricades in place.
The city has identified its top "high water locations" — spots that routinely give them problems. Most of those locations have warning signs and automatic barricades.
Those locations are:
- 5500 Dirks Road
- 8000 Old Granbury Road
- 2100 Cunningham Street
- 9200 Trinity Boulevard
- 7900 Trinity Boulevard
- 3000 Precinct Line Road at Randol Mill Road
- 2700 Decatur Avenue at Northeast 28th Street
The city considered the 1200 block of East Butler Street and 4950 Cromwell Marine Creek Boulevard problem areas as well, but work has been done in those locations which is hoped to prevent future problems.