GASTONIA, N.C. -- Drive around Gastonia and you will see leaves and branches piled somewhere on almost every street.

Crews have been working six and seven day weeks, putting in 12 hours a day trying to catch up after five storms hit the city early in the season, starting back in April.

In some cases the limbs being picked up are from the first or second storm. Just when the city is catching up it seems, another storm comes along.

James Currence, the city general service director, says he understands why some people are frustrated because debris on their street has not been cleaned up.

I have brush in front of my house also but I know that we will be there, Currence said. Just be patient and we will be there as soon as we can.

Crews to date have picked up 23,000 tons of yard waste. All that debris is stacked in a vast field off Duke Street where it is being turned into mulch.

Later this month, area residents will be able to drive up and purchase some of the mulch for their yards.

Marie Ballard who has a pile of limbs at the curb says most of them came down during a wind storm last weekend.

She knows the city is slowly trying to catch up and has hope it will be gone soon.

As his tired crews push on, Currence keeps an eye on the sky and when the clouds start forming, he says he thinks of only one thing. Prayer -- Rain only!

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