22 Riverdale apartments need extensive repairs after derecho

A leaky roof forced the evacuation of dozens of apartments in Riverdale.

Michelle Basch, wtop.com

RIVERDALE, Md. – Not all the damage from recent bad storms turned up right away, and for some Prince George’s County residents, it means they can’t return to their apartments because of water damage.

About 200 residents of an apartment complex in Riverdale were evacuated Wednesday night because the roof was leaking badly.

“The roof had been compromised, water was coming through and was leaking through the electrical outlets, through the lights,” says Sam Wynkoop with Prince George’s County’s Department of Environmental Resources.

He also describes water “pouring down the walls” and “big, big gaping holes” in the roof.

Wynkoop says it’s likely the roof was damaged in the June 29 derecho, and the problem was made worse by other storms that came after.

The complex, called Riverdale Towers, sits right next to another apartment complex that had its roof ripped off by the derecho.

After some repairs were made at Riverdale Towers, many evacuated residents were allowed to return to their apartments Thursday evening.

County officials say 43 of the 65 units in the Riverdale building are now habitable.

But about 22 units need more extensive repairs before people can safely move back in. They will require up to three months of renovations.

Officials from Prince George’s Department of Environmental Resources say renovations could take anywhere between six and twelve weeks.

A temporary Red Cross shelter has been set up at Bladensburg High School for residents who need it.

Residents who need help or more information can also call the Prince George’s County Emergency County Operations Hotline at 301-583-1950.

Follow Michelle and WTOP on Twitter. Saraya Wintersmith contributed to this story.

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