FRUITDALE, Ala. (WKRG) – Bus drivers have a different job Monday at Fruitdale High School. They’re removing large limbs and debris from campus after a tornado ripped apart trees and buildings last week.
“We’ve got our entire staff here from teachers, to bus drivers, to custodians. There’s been people volunteering every day since the tornado hit,” said Principal Curt Stagner.
The agricultural building was the hardest hit. Walls are gone and notebooks and paper are scattered across a classroom. Strong winds left a mess behind.
“We’re blessed that it didn’t happen while we were here at school,” Stagner explained.
Cleanup started last Wednesday, but the campus remains closed while work continues. Power is back on, but Principal Stagner said it’s still not safe for students to return until nails and smaller items are picked up. School officials also want to make sure the cafeteria is up and running.
By Wednesday they hope to allow students back on campus. That decision will be made Tuesday.
“We’re putting up some safety fences to keep the kids out of certain areas and trying to control traffic through some dangerous places, but for the most part we should have everything secured and ready to go,” he said.
It’ll likely take weeks, if not months, before the ag building is rebuilt. Donations have already started coming in, but for now, the focus is getting students back to campus.
“We’re going to be back and ready to go and put this thing behind us and move forward,” said Stagner.