Heavy weekend rain kept Public Works crews busy Monday
The weekend heavy rain kept Chattanooga Public Works crews busy on Monday.
The weekend heavy rain kept Chattanooga Public Works crews busy on Monday. They spent the day unclogging storm drains across the city to avoid more flooding problems. They hit the 100 plus "hot spots" most prone to flooding, and they responded to 311 calls about problem areas.
"If you get a large amount of rain in a short period of time, no matter how open your drains are, it can take only so much water," Ricky Colston, Director of City Wide Services, says. "What we say is it can only drink so much."
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One problem spot was on Hunter Road near Hilltop Drive. There wasn't much water across the road, but there was a lot of it in the ditch along the road.
The storm drain was clogged full of leaves, twigs and litter. Workers used rakes and shovels to drag and pull out as much debris as possible. Excess water, which can't get through the drains, will flow back over roads and could cause drivers to hydroplane or skid.
"Unfortunately, we're still in the winter months, so if you have water that's sheeting across the road and the temperature drops, it could freeze," adds Colston.
Excess water could also damage nearby properties. Colston says there's something homeowners can do to keep storm drains from clogging so fast.
"If you do rake your leaves, if you will not rake them into a ditch or in front of any drains, that will also help," says Colston.
Instead, put the leaves in neat piles at the edge of your lawn and call 311, or use the CHATT311 app to have Public Works pick them up. You can also call 311 to report a backed up storm drain.