Albany pumps out sewers ahead of more rain - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Albany pumps out sewers, Sylvester cleans ditches

ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

After a massive deluge last week, with as much as nine inches of rain producing flash flooding, the City of Albany is taking precautions now.

City officials have directed crews to pump out sewer lines to make sure they're clear for another round of anticipated heavy rain over the next week.

The pervious rain events dumped water that was quickly absorbed by parched earth, dry bar-pits, and empty river and creek beds, but many of those are at or near capacity now. 

A new torrent of rain won't have much place to go until the previous water can recede.

And it doesn't have much time. We're expecting heavy rain four of the next six days in the Albany area.

Tywon Heath watches as Dougherty County Public Works employees check pumps at the holding pond across from his Countryside Drive home. Last week some streets in the nearby Ramsey Road neighborhood flooded, and he's seen the forecast for another heavy rain.

"I've rode around the neighborhood a little bit and seen where the water is coming up. Just keeping an eye on things," Heath said.

Dougherty County Public Works' pumps have not stopped, getting ready for a second weekend of heavy rain.

 "These pumps have been going ever since. We've got several pumping stations and we've been moving the pumps around. Getting the water where we can get it out of here. But we haven't stopped since last week," said Public Works Assistant Director Chucky Mathis.

Albany Public Works Crews are busy cleaning out sewer and storm drainage lines across town.

Several pumps, like these at Van Deman Street, are also at work, lowering holding ponds as much as possible. But officials biggest flooding concern now is that water from the north coming down the Flint River could raise its level to the 25 to 30 foot level, which would cover the city's drainage pipes so the rain can't flow out.

  "The only variable we can't control is the river. If it comes up above flood stage and gets in the pipes, then we have some problems that we are not able to deal with, with the current infrastructure that we have," said Albany Public Works Director Phil Roberson.

"That's our plan. To pump them down as far as possible and wait on the next round. We're like Muhammad Ali. We've fought one round, knocked it back. Now we're ready for it to come back," Mathis said.

Heath and other South Georgians stand by their homes, and pray the water stays out of them.

And officials in Sylvester are asking residents there to be prepared for potential flooding.

The Sylvester Code Enforcement Supervisor is asking folks to be good stewards and keep debris out of ditches.  This will help the water flow and keep storm drains clear.  Last week parts of Worth County saw nine inches of rain, causing some minor flooding. 

Copyright 2013 WALB.  All rights reserved.

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