Following the devastating floods in Greenbrier County, residents are not the only group working to help people recover. First responders and local fire departments are also working hard to rebuild. On Tuesday The Rainelle Volunteer Fire Department opened back since the floods and started responding to calls, but despite the improvements Firefighters said they are still struggling to rebuild.
“We’ve been impacted the same as the community we’ve never had water in the station this is where we evacuate people to we had 2 feet of water in here. The station itself was impacted 4 of our firefighters, their homes were completely wiped out. A handful more partially,” assistant chief, Shawn Wilford said.
To help cope with the devastation Wilford said he has instructed those firefighters who were hit by the storm, to stay with their families as long as they need, before coming back to volunteer. He’s also remaining positive and holding on to hope that things will get better. “Just seeing the overall devastation to the homes the businesses. Its been tough but we will make it through. It’s what we do here in West Virginia.”
In addition to volunteers being affected, the departments building also suffered some losses. Chief Wilford spent the day showing U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito and the damage left behind from the storm. Several of the trucks were damaged, along with the departments administrative offices. Senator Capito says now that some time has passed she’s looking into ways to restore fire departments like Rainelle and get them to normal
We’re looking at how do we repair these vital resources to the community these first responders they did such a good job with the boat rescues and the truck rescues but they have suffered some damage here,” said Capito.
The assistant chief also mentioned the fire department’s building suffered severe damage and as a result they are currently accepting monetary donations to help rebuild.