Scott G Winterton, Deseret News
FARMINGTON — Wind-caused damage from Thursday's storm should easily top $20 million to homes, businesses and public infrastructure in Davis County alone — even as debris removal costs mount over the weeks to come.
"There are a lot of folks out there trying to put the pieces together," said Davis County Commission Chairwoman Louenda Downs.
"Humpty Dumpty had a great fall," she said. "But all the kings' horses and all the kings' men are out there working to put us back together."
Among those trying to pick of the pieces of their lives and property were residents of Centerville.
"There have been a lot of trees here in Centerville that have been here as long as many of the houses … that have come down and it's kind of sad to see some of that history come down," said homeowner Bryan Bartholomew.
Bartholomew noted, however, that the hardship resulting of the storm has been softened somewhat by the outpouring of support from other affected community members.
"It seems wherever you go, you see a group of people that have just come together and are helping a neighbor out," he said.
Another Centerville resident, David Williamson, has the unenviable task of trying to repair his heavily damaged roof as the temperature drops along the Wasatch Front over the next few days. But like so many of his neighbors, he is taking the prospect in stride.
"I'm finding a lot of joy on my weekend," Williamson explained sarcastically. "I have four days off (to repair) my roof that I wasn't going to fix until next spring,"
Williamson and his father-in-law expect to put down 250 square feet of new shingles in the coming days, something he doesn't know all that much about.
"I've done maybe one and half roofs my whole life, so that's the extent of my experience," Williamson said. Meaning there is no guarantee on his work.
"We'll wait until the snow and ice get on it to see if it holds up," he said.
Until then, Williamson said he considers himself lucky that the damage to his property was not any worse, especially compared to a lot of his neighbors.
"No trees on the house, my fence suffered some shots, got a shed with a hole through it," he said. "But we fared fairly well compared to others I guess you could say."
Preliminary damage estimates to city and county-owned buildings and other property is easily at $3.5 million, Downs added, leading to Thursday's disaster declaration by county officials.
That declaration will kick in a review by the state and precipitate a visit by Federal Emergency Management teams to review damage claims. Federal funding could be tapped to help cities and the county recoup costs for replacement of hundreds of street signs, traffic signals and light poles lost to the hurricane-force winds. It would also cover costs to replace tiles and roofs of government-owned buildings damaged in the storm.
Centerville declared a disaster Thursday and on Friday, Farmington officials were following suit.
"We have a massive amount of damage," said Farmington City Manager Dave Millheim, who spent much of Friday on a tour of wind-ripped sites.
He said the wind came with such force it turned flying debris into dangerous projectiles.
"At Farmington City Hall, the concrete tiles on the roof acted like missiles," he said. "We had 15 to 20 embedded tiles that went through shingles, wood, membranes. You could not throw one hard enough to make it do that."
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