CORDOVA, Alaska — Cordova residents say at this time of year, there are more shovels than people in town -- but even with all the shovels, they can't seem to dig themselves out of more than 14 feet of snow they're facing.
"I’ve never seen this before," said commercial fisherman Jeff Bailey.
Bailey flew into Cordova from Anchorage Monday morning, but he couldn't even drop his luggage off at his home because his doorstep was covered in several feet of snow.
"I have to tunnel us straight into the front door," Bailey said.
Luckily, the project didn't take the several hours he was expecting it to, thanks to the Alaska National Guard. About 15 minutes into Bailey’s dig, a dozen members of the Guard showed up to help out.
"I think a lot of people are relieved that the National Guard is here so they have some sort of relief," said Rachel Brown, who was shoveling off a rooftop in downtown Cordova.
Around town buildings are stacked with up to five feet of snow on the rooftops, and more is on its way. According to the National Weather Service a storm will roll in Monday evening, bringing with it several more inches of snow.
"We are trying to get as much done before all of this hits again," said Allen Marquette, a public information officer with the city. "All the roofs in town are stressed; if they haven’t been shoveled already, this will add to that."
But the damage is already done in some places. According to Marquette, First National Bank had a wall cave in, and a cafe in the downtown area that also saw structural damage.
Contact Jackie Bartz