Unexpected Flood Wreaks Havoc upon Ramsey

Azul Westpfahl, Interviewer

On Nov. 17, storms moved through Fort Smith, causing a flood at Ramsey Junior High. The main entrance to the school was flooded with two-and-a-half feet of water.    

    “It was in the circle drive,” said Hahn Chuong, building engineer at Ramsey.

    “There were two cars involved, and both of them had some water damage. One was able to move, and the other had to be towed,” said Matt Neissl, the football coach at Ramsey.

    “Two cars were damaged, and it took about two-and-a-half hours to get it out,” said Chuong.

    “First of all, I just wanted to help the people out of the water. We tried to get a van away from the flood so we could drain the water. Once that happened, we got the woman out of the vehicle,” said Chuong. “The water was waist-high.”

    Neissl explained the issue.

    “There was a drain that needed to be cleared, so once we cleared one drain, the other was just going to take off, and there was so much water that it wasn’t able to drain properly, so over time, it just kind of went down,” said Neissl. “I think the rain lasted about half an hour.”

    Chuong would not take credit for draining the water.

    “We did nothing to get rid of the flood. We waited till the rain slowed down, and it just cleared in the drain itself,” said Chuong.

    Even though it flooded inside the school building, it was not necessary to notify anyone about the flood.

    “There was some water in H Hall and around the orchestra room,” said Neissl.

    Both Chuong and Neissl talk about what they would do differently if it happened again.

    “I would do the same every year; there’s nothing to change,” said Chuong.

    “I don’t know if I would do anything differently, except to make sure that we as a school make some adjustments to where we can drop students off,” said Neissl.

    Chuong explains what he felt during that time.

    “It wasn’t scary. It’s normal. It happens every year,” he said.