Crews prepare for flash flooding - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Crews prepare for flash flooding

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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

South Georgia emergency officials are preparing for the possibility of increasing flash flooding.

Heavy rains falling now on South Georgia are expected to continue for at least the next two days.

The National Weather Service says most of the South could receive three to five inches of rain on average through Friday morning, but isolated areas could receive double or triple that amount.

Workers took action along holding ponds with large water pumps Tuesday morning, pumping water from the ponds into creeks flowing nearby.

Crews seen in photos were pumping water on Country Side Drive near Ramsey Road, a historically flood prone area.

Officials are hoping the extra room in the holding ponds will be sufficient to handle any more serious rain the area sees. They say they want to take advantage of time while rain is not falling to have the area in better shape for more wet weather.

"The idea is to pull them on down as far as we can, so that the rains that come get in the storm drainage system, will come into these holding areas" says Dougherty County Public Works Assistant Director Chucky Mathis. "Some of these areas have a pump, and we'll pump it out as fast as we can."

Near the Flint River at Cotton and Front Streets, City of Albany Public Works uses a big sewer "jet vac" truck to clear the screens at one of the city's biggest storm stations, to make sure they are clear for maximum water flow.

"Because of Albany's topography, we're so flat, we have to have these storm stations to pump the water in and out of the city," says City of Albany Public Works Director Phil Roberson.

City and County employees today making sure all storm drain lines and ditches around Albany are clear and water can flow smoothly. They are doing extra preparations because the ground in South Georgia is already saturated.

One of the wettest June months on record has made the flash flooding possibilities greater than in recent drought years.

"We still got water from the rains this week that are getting to the tributaries.  And they are flowing toward the river," says Mathis.

Emergency officials say the chance of river flooding is remote, but flash flooding in trouble areas is expected.

"[The] biggest problem we see typical places like Oglethorpe, Broad, and downtown areas.  And in neighborhoods sometimes you have localized flooding.  But usually it goes down if people will exercise care around those areas," says Roberson.

That especially means if you see water standing in the road, don't drive through it.  Turn around and go around it.

City officials are also asking home owners to not put yard trash on the curb or in roadways.  It could get in the storm drains and clog them.

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