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Catonsville businesses report flooding, damage after devastating Sunday night storm

An exposed storm drain on Frederick Road was the most visible damage in central Catonsville after Sunday's flooding. Many stores and restaurants along Frederick Road are operating as usual.
An exposed storm drain on Frederick Road was the most visible damage in central Catonsville after Sunday's flooding. Many stores and restaurants along Frederick Road are operating as usual.(Cody Boteler / Baltimore Sun Media Group)

On the surface, it looked like it was business as usual on Frederick Road the day after intense rainfall in Baltimore County caused widespread flooding and destruction to homes, roads and businesses.

At Catonsville’s Black Kettle Restaurant, staffers were serving customers Monday afternoon. The neon “open” sign was shining from the window of Bark!, a pet supply store.

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The only visible damage was an exposed storm drain that was roped off with traffic cones and police tape.

But not everyone was spared from the torrential downpour that struck suddenly Sunday night, causing devastation to historic Ellicott City for the second time in less than two years, and flooding throughout Howard and Baltimore counties.

Locations around Ellicott City and Catonsville saw between 5.36 inches and 10.38 inches of rain on Sunday, said Kyle Pallozzi, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Baltimore-Washington forecast office.

Kirby Spencer, who owns 813, 815 and 819 Frederick Road, reported flooding in the basements of Atwater’s and Pat’s Porch.

Spencer said she’s been unable to get analysis from utility providers, so Atwater’s will likely be closed Tuesday.

“Atwater’s has never had water in the basement,” Spencer said. “Never.”

Baltimore County public works and fire officials talk Monday about efforts to repair roads and rescue operations that took place Sunday night. (Cody Boteler/Baltimore Sun Media Group)

Reggie Sajauskas, owner of Objects Found, an antique store on Egges Lane, said on Monday that water rushed into her store Sunday night, damaging inventory and bringing a river of mud and silt to the floor.

She said a crew of 10 to 15 people had been inside the store, cleaning and organizing since 9 a.m., and said she’d likely be working until 5 p.m. or 6 p.m.

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She said she had already thrown away at least two truck-loads of inventory because it was damaged or un-recoverable. She said she’s tracking the damage but had no estimate on what the cost of her loss would be.

“Artwork and books go right in the trash so your store doesn’t stink,” Sajauskas said.

Terri Doan, a licensed esthetician, who shares space with Primp Salon at 1011 Frederick Road, said she was working with a client Sunday evening when the torrential rains started.

Doan said water entered the building through the windows and electrical outlets. But she and others in the building at the time were able to sop up water into buckets, towels and sheets to keep the water from rising. No equipment was damaged, she said.

“We’ll be OK,” she said. “Compared to what they’re dealing with down [in Ellicott City], we’re blessed, really.”

The Band Shoppe, located at 6411 Frederick Road, wrote on Facebook that the store would be closed “for some time,” but would be working to help local musicians hurt by the flooding once they reopen.

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Five Oaks Swim Club at 1817 Frederick Road reported on Facebook that the pool will “likely be closed for several days.”

818 Market, a planned gourmet grocery store, told a reporter there was some flooding in the courtyard and basement and said the overall impact “should be small” on the location.

Torrential rains on Sunday caused flooding in Catonsville and Oella, chewing up pavement, toppling trees and flooding homes.

J.W. Treuth and Sons, Appalachian Bluegrass Shoppe, Blue Iris, Peace A Pizza, Pat’s Porch, Narcissus Salon & Spa, B Boutique, The Beauty Bar 402, Rooster + Hen Store, Farmhouse Greens and Cosmic Comix & Toys all reported on Facebook they were unaffected.

On Monday morning, County Executive Don Mohler toured damage in Catonsville and Oella, near Ellicott City, along with public works director Steve Walsh and other elected officials including County Councilman Tom Quirk, who represents the area.

Mohler said there were “pockets of damage” throughout the county. Several roads in Catonsville remained closed as of Monday afternoon.

“You see it on TV but until you come up and walk it, there are no words,” Mohler said.

Quirk said Catonsville and Ellicott City are “very connected,” because many residents in one have businesses in the other.

“I think the federal government needs to be involved as well — along with the state — with a long-term sustainable solution,” Quirk said. “This second great flood will take quite some time to recover from.”

Mohler said he was impressed by the generosity of everyone he saw.

“I think folks really did step up, they looked out for one another,” Mohler said. “It was Baltimore County at its very best. We know when Baltimore County is at its best, no one does it better.

Baltimore Sun reporter Christina Tkacik contributed to this story.

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