West Memphis weathers the storm

New drainage basin does its job, few problems reported during downpour

By John Rech news@theeveningtimes.com

West Memphis took on 6 and 1/2 inches of rain Monday and Tuesday. The rain gauges at the waste water treatment plant measured 1.85 inches on Monday, followed Immediately with 4.7 inches Tuesday evening. The Westwood and Foxwood neighborhoods — areas in the city that have experienced flooding under such precipitation in the past — weathered the storm well. The new runoff basins south of Westwood worked according to plan. Mayor Bill Johnson had a good report Wednesday morning. “We drove the streets at 11 p.m. over there, everything looked like it was draining well” said Johnson. “Prior to building those retention ponds we’d still be in standing water.” The citywide view was also pretty good. “We had no calls to transport anyone,” said Johnson. Assistant Fire Chief Jeff Jones said the department had a busy night with calls but had no reports of water in houses in Westwood Acres subdivision. “The water was up in yards, but there were no reports of water in the homes,” said Jones. “The new basins really worked well.” Utilities Manager John Rimmer said the city weathered well. “We had some small spotty power outages when the wind first started blowing hard,” said Rimmer. “A few of our big water pumps had blown fuses which we replaced. Some of the pumps did not even have to come until 11 p.m.”

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