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Portsmouth woman facing $30K in property damage after road collapse

East Bay

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) — A Portsmouth resident experienced nearly $30,000 in property damage after the heavy rains from the remnants of Hurricane Ida in early September caused the collapse of several roads in one neighborhood.

Nancy Mowery said when she woke up on Sept. 2, the sand and debris “was up about nine inches on my garage door.”

Photos that Mowery shared with Target 12 show damage to the front, sides and back of the house.

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Kevin Gavin, the Portsmouth town solicitor, told Target 12 the town will not pay directly for any damages, and Mowery said that insurance companies have also said they’ll refuse payment.

Gavin said in an email to Target 12, “Any claims that are submitted to the Town for alleged flooding damage due to the storm will be referred to the Town’s insurer, the R.I. Interlocal Risk Management Trust, for handling.”

When Mowery inquired about what her flood insurance would cover, Mowery said she was told the company only covers flood damage inside the house.

And when she asked what her homeowner’s insurance would cover, she said she was told “they couldn’t cover anything either, because it was a flood.”

Mowery has lived in the house for nearly 20 years, and most of that time was spent with her husband, Russell. But he died in August, just one month before the road collapse devastated her property.

“It’s been hard,” Mowery said. “I was married for 63 years to a wonderful, wonderful person.”

She added, “I’m trying to do the best I can, because if he were here, he’d say not to worry.”

Mowery told Target 12 she’s also considering being part of a joint claim that would seek federal assistance for damage from Hurricane Ida.

Tolly Taylor ( is a Target 12 investigative reporter for WPRI 12. Connect with him on Twitter and on Facebook

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