How homeowners, city crews are preparing for possible severe weather

Posted at 12:13 PM, Aug 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-07 13:48:47-04

HENRICO COUNTY, Va., — The sounds of chainsaws and a chipper echoed through a Glen Allen neighborhood hours before the severe weather is expected to blow through.

CBS 6 caught up with a C.S. Flournoy Inc. tree trimming crew as they worked to take down towering limbs on a homeowner’s property Monday morning.

This job was routine maintenance, but just in time for the potential for the overhanging branches and debris to wreak havoc on a home.


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A storm system will move into the Mid-Atlantic region, bringing a chance of strong to severe storms later in the day. Those storms are also forecasted to bring high winds that can easily topple trees in the right conditions.

Isolated storms are possible by mid-afternoon, mainly well west of Interstate 95, according to CBS 6 meteorologists.

Warner Coffey is production sales manager at C.S. Flournoy Inc. and warned homeowners from performing this type of extensive tree trimming by yourself.

“I wouldn’t get up on a ladder to do any kind of trimming or anything like that. You can do your ornamental trees, like pear trees, apple trees, and low canopy stuff,” Coffey explained.

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Warner Coffey, production sales manager at C.S. Flournoy Inc

He recommended leaving the majority of routine tree maintenance for the experts.

Coffey said homeowners should get their property assessed every four to five years.

His crews look out for dying, overhanging limbs and opportunities to thin out the canopy. Thinning out the tree canopy allows the strong winds to blow through the leaves without bringing the tree down with them.

Richmond’s Department of Public Works (DPW) also just completed a high-water detection system on the flood-prone Bainbridge Street between 20th and 21st Streets.

Far too often, CBS 6 crews see drivers attempting to pass through the flooded roads despite the warnings from meteorologists and officials.

A DPW spokesperson said the system is in operation on Monday and could see its first test as severe weather may impact the city between 3 p.m. and 8 p.m.

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Bainbridge Street

High Water Detection Systems provide state-of-the-art public safety warnings to alert the public to stay off flooded roadways. During flooding, this advance warning station will advise motorists of flooded roadways by activating flashing beacons, message signs, and automatic road barrier gates. Typical problem sites include low water crossings, underpasses, and areas that are prone to coastal flooding, according to a press release.

DPW said the system uses software to monitor flooding conditions and will issue alerts to the Department of Public Utilities if there is a problem.

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