Rain + frozen ground = flooding

Mar 3, 2015

City of Cincinnati workers spent Tuesday clearing storm water pipes and manholes of leaves, debris and trash. With lots of melting snow, rain and more snow in the forecast, they're worried about flooding.

Principle engineer of the Storm Water Management Utility, Eric Saylor, put it in perspective. "If we did nothing, basically you'd have overland street flooding. With colder temperatures you would have "ponding" around some of the inlets which could, of course, lead to icing, so it becomes a safety hazard as well."

Saylor and his staff had a long list of locations to check based on past problems. He says the massive sewer system overhaul mandated by the consent decree (Wet Weather Improvement Program) will prevent some of the flooding.

This is the Mill Creek Barrier Dam.
Credit Storm Water Management Utility / City of Cincinnati

Preventing Mill Creek Flooding

The Storm Water Management Utility's Jeff Oxenham is preparing to dam up the Mill Creek. The weather will dictate the timetable, but Oxenham expects it to be Thursday or Friday with the Ohio River expected to nearly reach flood stage.

The Mill Creek floodgates prevent the Ohio River from backing up into the Mill Creek. Pumps are then activated to pump water from the Mill Creek, over the Barrier Dam, and into the Ohio River.