News 12 Tours Restricted Areas Considered a “War Zone”
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- We got a better look at the Holly Hills neighborhood devastated by the storm.
With the help of C.A.R.T.A., News 12 joined Chattanooga police and fire department officials for a special tour.
A majority of the homes are unlivable, and volunteers are doing everything they can to offer support.
Easter Sunday’s tragic storm changed the perspective of residents in the Holly Hills neighborhood.
“As people we’re still here. Possessions can be replaced” said Bob Ateca.
This isn’t the first time Hamilton County has been effected by chaotic weather but some believe this is the most devastating situation.
“We were both involved in the 2011 tornadoes and widespread damage. This just crushes what we saw in 2011” said Chattanooga Fire Chief R. Hyman.
“For the first night or two I know that we have home owners that are sleeping in these houses” said Chattanooga Police Chief David Roddy. “Houses with no windows, no doors and no power and destruction everywhere and they’re sleeping in that.”
Kids are still trying to be kids in a jarring situation.
“I really Anna go explore the back yard. I don’t remember a thing. Playhouse is crushed” said a young boy name Collins who was playing in his yard. “Are you scared at all? A little bit but not really.”
The destruction in Holly Hills is extensive. It’s been considered a war zone out here. Property damage is at 170 million and is expected to reach 200-300 million going forward.
“In the tornado path, it’s about 1500 yards wide and about nearly 9 miles long” said CHief Hyman.
Volunteers are doing all they can to offer support.
Law enforcement recommends volunteers to reach out to the YMCA on Shallowford road for access into restricted areas.
“I asked someone ‘how do you eat an elephant?’ And someone said ‘one bite at a time.’ I said no you bring 500 of your friends and that’s what’s going on around here right now” said Chief Roddy.
Officials are exhausting all of their efforts during this rebuilding period.
“We’re doing everything we can from a resource stand point” said Chief Hyman. “We’re tapping into our international unions and some of our workforce unions in order to get them money and be able to get them shelter and really help stand them back up.”