No serious flooding after first major storm
December 19, 2005
The snow turned to slush and has since disappeared from most areas since residents awoke Sunday to find it blanketing the region. All-too-familiar puddles and, in some areas, larger pools of water were left in its wake.
The weekend weather “was a real nuisance storm,” said Larry Werner, city engineer. “The snow was so wet, then the rain on top of it.”
The biggest complaint from residents? “Some clogged (storm) drains,” Werner said.
Since similar conditions on New Year’s Day 1997 brought massive floods to Carson City the city and state have been working to keep this from happening again.
Crews went into emergency mode, working 12-hour shifts, Werner said, beginning late Saturday evening. They were removing snow from the streets and clearing storm drains so the system could work as efficiently as possible, Werner said.
Both the Shenandoah Basin at Imus Street and Conestoga Drive, and the Eagle Creek Basin near the new hospital are complete. Vicee Canyon improvements now contain water at Winnie Lane and Foothill Road.
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A series of basins at Combs Canyon are slated for construction beginning this spring. There will be no more major improvements this year because the storm season is officially under way. Conditions would be unsafe for workers, for example, because the ground would be too unstable, Werner said.
Construction of the Carson City Freeway has also brought with it major improvements to the city’s storm drain system, Werner said.
Plaza 50, with Scolari’s supermarket as its anchor, is sometimes referred to as “Lake Lompa.” It fared well after this latest storm, however. The area was subject to major improvement in preparation for the freeway.
A big-box culvert was constructed from Arrowhead to Northridge drives. And with the second part of the freeway project there will be more drainage improvements, said Scott Magruder, public information officer for Nevada Department of Transportation.
“So far, there’s been some water puddling, but it’s nothing like in the past,” said Jennifer Stevens, manager of the Supercuts on Highway 50. The hair salon sits closer to the street than the supermarket and is in an area where water routinely collected after storms, until the freeway project required drainage improvements.
“Our goal has been to get existing system to capacity, which is a project in itself,” Werner said.
He noted that the Board of Supervisors approved a storm-water plan in 2004. These improvements started with inspectors looking at private basins and channels as well as public drainage helpers “to make sure what’s out there works as a system,” Werner said.
Residents are asked to monitor the storm drain grates outside their homes and to remove leaves and other small debris that might be clogging the drains and keeping them from being effective.
“There will always be some flooding and ponding. It’s just not cost-effective to deal with all of that stuff, ” Werner added. “The backbone is there; we’re just starting to see an impact.”
n Contact reporter Terri Harber at firstname.lastname@example.org or 881-1215.
For your information
• Residents are asked to call the city if they see any unusual flood conditions.
Call 887-2355 during office hours and 887-2343 for street flooding after hours.
• The Nevada Department of Transportation also warned of black-ice dangers to motorists.
To check road conditions, call 1-877-687-6237 (1-877-NVROADS) or go to http://www.nevadadot.com/traveler/