FEMA scheduled to start assessing Hamden storm damage

HAMDEN -- The tornado clean up is progressing in Hamden, especially along Still Hill Road where residents are counting their blessings.

"It sounded like a plane landed on our house," said Mark Baselice, who hosted several politicians for a media briefing on Friday morning.

He was more fortunate than his next door neighbor, Melissa Blount, who had just gone into her house from the deck, when trees crashed through both the house and deck.

"They’re saying it’s probably gonna be about 10 months before we are able to move back in the house," Blount said, also noting that a large commercial meat smoker she and her husband use for a part-time business was destroyed.

The tornado bounced across the northern part of town.

"It looks like a war zone and I’m concerned about the exorbitant cost of clearing up the trees," said Alan Edelman.

Whether federal funding will soften the blow is still unclear.

"FEMA will begin its preliminary damage assessment this Monday," said U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D) Connecticut.

Edelman, whose home dodged damage, had an estimated 200 trees snapped on his eight acre property, some crunching his garage, which will dent his wallet.

"I estimate it at around $75,000, perhaps more, and that’s without removing stumps," said Edelman.

Blumenthal said it's imperative that impacted residents keep excellent records of their expenses because it's possible whatever is not covered by insurance could be tax deductible.

For Baselice, this tornado was a bit of an unpleasant flashback.

"I went through it in 1989. We had a tornado on the other side to Hamden. "So, if you ever want to move near me, I wouldn’t advise it.

Hamden's Mayor, Curt Leng, said

within the next two weeks, there will be a public forum for residents with storm recovery related questions, including on the topic of insurance.