Albany Public Works works overnight to keep homes safe - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany Public Works works overnight to keep homes safe

Albany- On Front Street the Public Works department has three pumps working 24 hours a day. They're moving storm water out of the main lines and directly into the river, because the normal pipes are still underwater due to all of the rain we've had. Crews say, this process is helping to protect rain water from backing up and causing more flooding.

"What we're going to do, is all through the night we will be monitoring this, public works personnel will be riding around watching the lakes and the streams and also the catch basins," said Phil Roberson, Director of Public Works.

Crews have set up extra pumps to keep the water moving.

"We've got about six extra pumps out there, set up all around the city, that we're pumping," said Roberson.

There's a growing concern because much of the city's storm drainage system simply can't handle any more water.

"For the large part, two thirds of the city's collection system is full right now. The river is higher than the pipes, the waste water treatment plant is running at capacity, so our only concern is water backing up through the system and catching these low lying areas and creating flooding problems," said Roberson.

With rain expected to continue through Friday, crews are doing everything possible to keep water away from local homes. Sandbags are available starting at the Public Works department.

"This would be only if you have flooded before and you that there's a chance if you get prolonged rain and you're going to flood, then I would suggest coming and getting some sandbags," said Roberson.

Public works says, residents who saw water earlier this week should be prepared.

"If they periodically flood then they probably need to be prepared for the fact that tomorrow afternoon they may have some rain. They may have some water in places they normally have it," said Roberson.

posted by jennifer.emert@walb.com