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Tuesday, May 18, 2021

Students displaced due to storm

Senior Alex Pham stands in several inches of water in his flooded living room of his apartment Friday, Oct. 14, 2016.
Senior Scott Mills moves a couch out of his flooded apartment Friday, Oct. 14, 2016.

A torrential downpour of rain forced three Western students out of their apartment. The much anticipated “Autumn Blast” dumped just under 3 inches of rain in 45 minutes starting at about 1 a.m. Friday, Oct. 14, 2016. The onslaught of rain flooded Western seniors Alex Pham, Scott Mills and Gavin Harris’ apartment on 22nd Street.

The roommates noticed the water flooding in around 1:30 a.m.

Pham walks past the entryway to his apartment where the drain failed during the storm Friday, Oct. 14, 2016.
Pham walks past the entryway to his apartment where the drain failed during the storm Friday, Oct. 14, 2016.

“It started with our drains. The drains failed, and they started pushing back up the water,” Pham said. “Then the next thing you know, we started seeing the water coming underneath our doorway. We tried to unplug it, but that didn’t work, so we tried jumping outside and bailing water, but the water just came too fast.”

Pham, Mills and Harris spent their day moving furniture and electronics out of their apartment.

“Save what you can. That’s the motto,” Pham said.

While Pham, Mills and Harris moved their belongings out of the apartment, clean-up crews moved in to try and unclog the drain and pump out the water.

“They [APEX] said they’ll reassess [the damages] on Monday,” Pham said.

Without renter’s insurance, Pham said they are responsible for the damages to their belongings as well as finding a place to stay in the interim despite the property being deemed “unlivable” by APEX.

APEX suggested that the group could stay at a motel, Pham said.

“I’m a college student. I don’t have that kind of money,” Pham said.

“I don’t know where we are moving long-term, but we’re moving all the important stuff to Harris’ girlfriend’s house,” Mills said.

“Save what you can. That’s the motto.”

Senior Alex Pham

A flood watch was issued by the National Weather Service Friday, Oct. 14 as heavy rains and high winds were forecasted to continue through the weekend as the third storm originating from the remnants of Typhoon Songda were due to arrive around midday on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2016. High wind advisories across Western Washington were in place until 2 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016.

Pham walks past the entryway to his apartment where the drain failed during the storm Friday, Oct. 14, 2016.
Senior Alex Pham stands in several inches of water in his flooded living room of his apartment Friday, Oct. 14, 2016.

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