Atlanta Watershed working ahead of anticipated rain to prevent flooded roads

Depending on how hard that rain falls, some drains my have a difficult time keeping area road clear, possibly flooding. 

ATLANTA — Days of rain are in store for an already-saturated metro, according to Severe Weather Team 2.

Depending on how hard that rain falls, some drains my have a difficult time keeping area roads clear, possibly leading to flooding.

Severe Weather Team 2 Meteorologist Eboni Deon spent the day with Atlanta Watershed workers, who hit the streets to keep that from happening.

Storm drains allow water to run off the street, but something as simple as leaves can cause entire streets to become flooded.

Clarence Simpson, from Atlanta Watershed Management, told Deon they stay on top of clearing drains and debris to prevent clogging that stops the flow of water.


Storm drains are cleaned daily, but when it is raining they’re monitored more closely, especially in flood zones.

“Before the rain, we come out and make sure everything else is cleaned off so that the water will drain properly,” Simpson said.

Atlanta Watershed workers use grate pullers to get into the drain and large spoons to remove any litter that fell in. This time of year, they mostly find leaves.

“In flood zone areas where water builds up in the street, if grates are covered up, the mouth of the inlet, no water can get through,” Simpson told Deon.

He said residents can help reduce drain clogs.

“Keep the street clear, blowing leaves up. That way, when it rains it won’t cover the grates,” Simpson said.

Litter is another problem that causes drains to clog.

Water bottles and food wrappers are just a few of the items pulled from the drains by Simpson and his crew.

When the storm lines get blocked, larger equipment is used, like a large vacuum.

"We have a vacuum that comes out and removes everything else in the line, if the line needs cleaning, we wash it through the vacuum," Simpson said.
It only takes a few inches of rain to flood some streets in the metro.