Pittsburgh continues to face problematic flash flooding

Trees and foliage planted in downtown Pittsburgh help to absorb rain water during a storm before it enters the sewer system. (Picture Source: Clean Rivers Campaign in Pittsburgh)

Trees and foliage planted in downtown Pittsburgh help to absorb rain water during a storm before it enters the sewer system. (Picture Source: Clean Rivers Campaign in Pittsburgh)

Last week, Triblive.com posted an article on the flash flooding happening in our area.

In it, many residents and neighborhood officials lament how the storms have affected their homes, businesses, and morale.  The sudden and forceful nature of flash floods pelt unsuspecting communities. Public safety officials and business owners are concerned about how safety is compromised during these rain events. During recent storms, safety officials rescued people from Route 51 while a car dealership owner watched the water cause expensive damage to his inventory.

The sudden and forceful nature of flash floods is often too much for community water ways and infrastructure to handle leading to flooding.

Nine Mile Run Watershed Association’s Executive Director Brenda Smith commented on the situation saying, “As long as we keep adding more impervious surface for the water to run off on, we’re going to keep having problems on the ground…[n]ow every time we have a big rainstorm, there’s flooding somewhere, and it’s usually in multiple locations.”

Many municipalities wish to address their flooding but are often confronted with large price tags. However, as part of the federal mandate to fix the flooding they must implement control.

Allegheny County is considering a plan which would require developers to address stormwater runoff on their properties which would also aid in reversing flooding.

You can read the Triblive.com article here.

As always, the Clean Rivers Campaign believes cost-effective solutions like rain barrels or rain gardens are essential to eradicate flooding. This green infrastructure approach would bring community benefits like improving aesthetics and creating jobs.

August has been deemed Water Quality Awareness Month by the EPA. You can celebrate by staying informed of water quality issues in your area and the solutions that can help. Sharing your knowledge with your friends is also a great way to celebrate.