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The original item was published from 8/17/2023 12:38:09 PM to 8/28/2023 12:00:04 AM.

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Posted on: July 27, 2023

[ARCHIVED] Recent Flooding in the Township

With the high-intensity storms of the past several weeks, we have heard from a number of our residents  about flooding and water damage. Staff is following up with these calls on a case-by-case basis by visiting each property to inspect and determine the root causes for the damage. If you have a stormwater situation that requires attention from Township staff, please email engineering@westwhiteland.org, including your street address and photos and a description of the damage.

The Township is empathetic to the plight of those affected by the storms. Rain events have intensified in severity and volume very quickly, calling for increased efforts by the public works and engineering departments, police, and fire company. We are here to support our property owners and offer assistance whenever possible. To tackle this situation most effectively, it will be necessary for the Township and residents to work together cooperatively.

Put simply, recent storms are heavier than those historically experienced in this area. What was once known as a “hundred-year storm” (occurring once every one hundred years) has become much more common, and we have received several of them in quick succession. As a result, the rainwater has exceeded the capacity of our storm drain system and is overflowing, even into areas that have not previously been identified as flood zones. As mentioned above, Township staff is actively responding to all resident reports of flooding and is inspecting the Township’s stormwater infrastructure to compile a prioritized plan of next steps.

While some of the Township’s stormwater infrastructure (storm sewers, retention and detention basins, swales) is maintained by the Township, responsibility can also lie with corporations, homeowner associations (HOAs), and private residents to keep the rainwater moving and draining. As the Township conducts the infrastructure inspections, we will be reaching out to these entities where additional maintenance work needs to occur.

Stormwater management is a top priority for the Township, and we do not know what else Mother Nature has in store for us. In addition to the actions described above, we are also pursuing local, state, and federal aid options to be able to offer to our residents. Importantly, we are also actively promoting the “Turn Around, Don’t Drown” message. Please do your part to protect your own safety and give our local first responders the ability to respond to accidents and other emergent situations. Never drive around a road barricade, and always turn around if you see water covering the road. A mere six inches of fast-moving flood water can knock over an adult. It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away most cars and just 2 feet of rushing water can carry away SUVs and trucks.

If you have questions about any of this information, please email engineering@westwhiteland.org.

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