Local

Renton residents say historic rain destroyed their vehicles

RENTON, Wash. — Some Renton families are cleaning up after flooding from the recent historic rainstorm.

Now with Christmas right around the corner, they face potential big bills to replace vehicles damaged by the high water.

People at the Fairwood Villa condominiums say it floods there every year.

Just as the rainstorm was historic, so was the damage it caused.

Geraldine Green walked carefully through the muck left behind by the rainwater that covered this entire parking lot.

“There’s a lot of mud and a bunch of junk,” she said.

She wanted to show where the water got into her only means of transportation.

“It came all the way up here,” she said, pointing to the water line on her vehicle, “All the way around. And I’m sure insurance is going to say it’s totaled.”

In the video above, it shows what the parking lot looked like at the height of Friday’s storm. Green crawled in through her vehicle’s trunk to see how bad it might be inside.

“And I saw all the water behind the front seat and in the front seat area,” she said.

By Friday night, the Fairwood Villa condo association had hired a sump pump to drain the water away. Its harsh chorus was still filling the air early Sunday afternoon.

But the residents say it should have been here before the storm started.

“They had ample warning,” said Green. “It was all over the news. And they also know that it floods here every year.”

All of that is cold comfort for Cynthia Barbeau. Her car and the one her son drives were both inundated and are undriveable now.

“Right now I’m a substitute teacher,” she said, “which means I have to go to a different place every single day. So, as far as taking buses or anything like that, that’s out of the question really. So I’m not even sure how I’m going to be able to work.”

A member of the Fairwood Villa homeowners association board declined to talk on camera. But he says they got the pump to tackle the water as soon as they could.

Still, he understands that this is a hardship for a lot of the people who live here.

Now they will have to rely on their own car insurance and likely dig into their own pockets to replace what was lost.