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Homeowners Assess Damage After Irene

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Derek Valcourt 370x278 Derek Valcourt
Derek Valcourt began working at WJZ in September 2002. His first major...
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PIKESVILLE, Md. (WJZ) — Fallen trees are causing headaches across Maryland.

Derek Valcourt has more on the havoc that fallen trees are wreaking in the area.

As trees came toppling down, anything in their way—homes, fences and even cars—didn’t stand a chance.

“I can’t drive it, can’t get it fixed. It’s done,” said Michelle Broom.

Broom is mourning the loss of her first car, crushed beneath a tree that fell in her North Baltimore neighborhood.

“I’m gonna cry, but I’m not gonna cry on TV,” Broom said.

Others have even more to cry about. In Pikesville, a huge tree punched holes in a roof. Another smashed through a sunroom. In Stevenson, falling trees nearly killed one couple, asleep in their bed. It was a similar story for a couple sleeping in a Northeast Baltimore home. In the city, James Evans remembers his night with Irene.

“I heard a squashing sound and I said, `A tree has fallen on the house,’” Evans said.

City forestry workers have been going nonstop since Irene cleared out.

“I’m telling you, I got a whole lot of work to do,” said Nathan Young with the forestry division.

The city’s first priority was clearing roads so that emergency vehicles could get down every street. Now they’re in full cleanup mode. They estimate close to 900 trees fell in Baltimore.

“Just this truck alone I know we’ve done over a hundred of them,” Young said.

Homeowners have to clear trees on their private property, like the huge one that ruined Robin Harris’ fence.

“I guess it was just an old tree,” Harris said.

She knows getting things back to normal won’t be easy but, like hundreds of other homeowners, she first has to wait for her insurance agent.

“Then I have to hire a private contractor to come out and remove it and chop it up and fix my sidewalk and put some dirt in the hole and fix my fence,” Harris said.

Private contractors are already out in force, cleaning up after Irene’s messy visit.

Irene is bringing a lot of work to tree trimmers as well. Some say they’ve got so many calls that they’re not taking any new customers. Others say they have a waiting list.

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