Neighbors Save Ohio Couple Trapped in Flooded Basement

A storm that passed through Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, left a couple trapped up to their necks in their flooded basement after its walls collapsed.

According to Cleveland News 5, Michael and Michaelann Hammonds went to their basement after a tornado warning was issued on the night of Monday, May 12. Minutes after going downstairs, the foundation on their Dwight Street home collapsed and water poured rapidly into the basement. Despite trying to get out of the basement, the flooding was too fast.

“The water and the stuff from the basement pulled us up to the rafters, so we had our heads between the floor joist with about six inches of air,” Michael Hammonds told News 5.

Then, a gas line broke, filling the air with the smell of gas.

According to the Akron Beacon Journal, the couple’s three children, ages 13, 12 and 9, who hadn’t gone to the basement, alerted their neighbor of what had happened. Soon, a group of neighbors arrived with axes and other tools and began to cut holes in the house’s first-level floor floor, freeing the couple.

CLIENT says water damage can weaken a home’s foundation to the point of collapsing, like what happened to the Hammonds. Waterproofing a basement is an affordable way to prevent expensive water damage like this.

“Foundation cracks can be tell tale signs that the foundation is in disrepair,” says Austin, Owner at The Real Seal. “Basement waterproofing can help prevent foundation erosion that cause issues like this, especially in brick and mortar foundations.”

Because of the extensive damage incurred during the basement flooding and the collapse of their foundation, the Hammonds told News 5 they expect to lose most of their possessions and for their home to be condemned — but that they’re more glad they have their lives.

“My kids have parents today. Stuff can be replaced,” Michael Hammonds said.

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