Detroit mayor says city is working to clear flood waters

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DETROIT - Statement from Mayor Duggan on storm flooding

On Monday, August 11, 2014, the City of Detroit was hit with a series of storms that dumped the most rain it has seen in a single day in 89 years.  This unexpectedly heavy rainfall has caused damage to homes and businesses. Portions of local freeways and surface streets became impassable.

In anticipation of today's additional rain, the Detroit Water and Sewerage Department (DWSD), in a coordinated effort with the Department of Public Works (DPW), has crews working across the city to identify roads and streets that are still flooded and need to be cleared of water. 

If residents are able to locate their catch basin and remove any visible debris, this may alleviate the flooding in front of their home. If it does not, they can call DWSD at 313-267-8000 during the day and 313-267-7401 after hours and the city will send out a crew to clear the obstruction.  

Despite the extraordinarily heavy downpour, DWSD's operational systems suffered no failures and by design excess water was discharged into the Detroit River as rapidly as possible in an effort to prevent flooding. Unfortunately, the volume of rain -- over five inches in some areas --overwhelmed sewer systems, causing widespread flooding. 

As of Tuesday morning, August 12, water levels were subsiding and most road flooding had receded.

Many thanks go out to the first responders -- including fire department and EMS workers --who attended to those in distress, in some cases pulling stranded motorists from their vehicles and getting them to safety.

The city's DPW will conduct a special bulk pickup to remove damaged items that residents take out to their curb. 

The city will not issue any citations for storm damaged debris left at the curb for several days until crews can remove it. 

Residents can contact the DPW at 313-224-3901 to notify them they will be taking flood damaged items to the curb before their normal pick up day.

City officials noted that flooding of this type also presents health concerns and risks.

City residents who experienced basement flooding are advised to contact local restoration services to dry and disinfect their belongings. If your skin has come into contact with sewer water, be sure to wash thoroughly with anti-bacterial soap immediately afterward.

Residents are urged to use extreme caution around standing water in the event it has come into contact with an electrical source.  Do not turn on appliances in flooded rooms until they have completely dried out.

Citizens who have questions regarding the after effects of this major storm are asked to call (313) 267-8000 during normal business hours and (313) 267-7401 after hours.