ORANGE BEACH, Ala. (WKRN) — A Hendersonville woman narrowly escaped Hurricane Sally’s path after flooding temporarily trapped her in Orange Beach, Alabama.
Kathy Laird said she drove to the Gulf Coast on Sunday, before Hurricane Sally was forecast to hit Orange Beach. When the storm shifted paths, Laird knew she was in trouble.
“While we were playing cards, the wind just started howling. The windows and the door was bowing. It was awful. It was six hours of nothing but listening to howling winds,” said Laird.
The Middle Tennessean had a front row seat from a beachfront condo when Sally made landfall.
“When the eye went over us, you could hear the howling and everything stopped. We did go out on the balcony for a few minutes and you could look up and see nothing but stars, and we could tell how much damage had been done to the condo,” said Laird.
When the sun rose Wednesday morning, Laird and her friends saw the destruction. Broken gates, a muddy pool, and debris scattered around the condo complex. They knew it was time to go home, but they were stuck.
“There’s three different bridges to get out of there and all of them were closed because of flooding,” said Laird.
With no power and no plan, Laird said some of her friends began to panic. Hours later, the water receded enough for them to cross a bridge and begin the trek back to Middle Tennessee. That’s when they saw what Laird said looked like a war zone. She snapped photos of mangled metal and collapsed rooftops and sent them to News 2.
“It’s everywhere. It looks like a bomb has gone off around here in different areas. There were boats on the road. There’s downed wires. Trees everywhere. There was a tug boat that got blown off course,” said Laird, “This was very terrifying.”
Laird told News 2 that Hurricane Sally is the worst weather event she’s ever experienced.