Repairs begin after Ike cuts up roughon course
Tuesday 16 September 2008
A clean-up operation was under way at the Ryder Cup venue yesterday after the remnants of Hurricane Ike ripped through Louisville. Kentucky's governor, Steve Beshear, declared a state of emergency when winds gusting up to 90mph on Sunday afternoon caused two deaths – one a 10-year-old boy mowing the lawn at home when a tree hit him – and left hundreds of thousands without power, possibly for more than a week.
At Valhalla, where Europe start their bid on Friday for an unprecedented fourth successive victory over the Americans, a television tower crashed onto the 12th green. Trees were also brought down, two roofs in the tented village area were damaged and flagpoles bent over.
As most of the European team flew out from Heathrow on a special airbus direct to Louisville, the championship director, Kerry Haigh, said: "The clean-up is going well. We have a lot of people working hard to be ready for tomorrow."
Today is the first day of official practice, although J B Holmes, one of two Kentuckians in the United States side, was already at the course and working on his game yesterday.
"I was going to play yesterday, but as I got here a roof blew off in front of the hotel and then a guy told us the power lines were down," Holmes said. "The wind was about 50-60mph then and I thought that it was not going to do me much good to go out on the course.
"You don't see this a whole lot around here. If you have 75mph winds there are not going to be many trees about and there are a lot of them here. I heard that the 12th green had some damage on it. There's not much you can do about wind."
The back part of the 12th green had been gouged by crashing metal from the television tower, but by mid-morning replacement sections of turf had already been laid by greenkeeping staff.
Roughly 280,000 people, were without power in the Louisville area. Hotels were plunged into darkness and drivers were warned about taking cars on to the roads, not just because of closures caused by trees falling and because traffic lights were out of action. At daybreak police were out operating traffic control at busy crossroads. Louisville's airport had to be closed for a while and many schoolchildren were told to stay at home.
Latest in Sport
Wimbledon 2015: Ball boy collapses in the heat on Court 17
Petr Cech blasts Chelsea supporters who sent him death threats after £11m Arsenal transfer: 'They are not true fans'
Nathaniel Clyne joins Liverpool: Transfer news live - Arda Turan decision, Petr Cech reaction, Sergio Ramos to Manchester United
Christian Benteke to Liverpool: Aston Villa striker ready to reject Tottenham
Football kits 2015/16: The good, the bad and the downright worst new shirts from around the world for next season
- 1 Tunisia hotel attack: Locals form 'human shield' to protect hotel from gunman Seifeddine Rezgui
- 2 Iain Duncan Smith's expenses credit card is suspended after he runs up £1,000 debt to taxpayer
- 3 German ethics council calls for incest between siblings to be legalised by Government
- 4 French woman dies in freak bungee jumping accident
- 5 Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck to divorce and end their 10-year marriage
The moment a Queen's Guard soldier lost it and drew his gun at annoying tourist
Greece crisis: IMF was pushed around by Angela Merkel and Nicholas Sarkozy – and now it is being humiliated
Greece crisis: The wider lesson is that it’s time to abandon this failed experiment in currencies
'I wish the BBC would stop calling it Islamic State' – David Cameron unleashes frustration at broadcaster
They are neither a 'state' nor 'Islamic': Why we shouldn't call them Isis, Isil or IS
Tunisia beach attack: How can British Muslims respond to the latest outrages?