South Bend trying to clear storm drains to prevent flooding

SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- Higher temperatures and a rainy forecast means there could be flooding in South Bend. Sewer operations crews are trying to clear drains of ice and snow before flooding becomes a problem.

South Bend resident Carol Balmer lives off Riverside Drive near the St. Joseph River. She says she is preparing for the worst.

"I am expected to see a lot of flooding, small cars will not be able to get down the side street," said Balmer.

Ice covered drains are making flooding prep difficult.

"I don't even know if you can find it right now," said Balmer.

South Bend crews are looking for those catchbasins.

"That takes the water down or down to the sewer line or to the separated line to the river or retention depending on where it is at," said Dale Helpingstine, Sewer Maintenance Superintendent.

The city has more than 36,000 drains, but the snow is making it hard to find them.

"If they get iced over like they are right now, the water just sits there. With the rain, and it will have nowhere to go, that's the problem," said Helpingstine.

The city is asking for your help before the heavy flooding begins.

"It is going to be an all out war tomorrow. If they know where it is, and they let us know where it is, that could save time. Save ourselves 30-40 minutes which is a couple more that we could get open," said Helpingstine.

If you know where there is a sewer drain near your home, call 3-1-1. They will get someone to come out and clear the drain to help prevent flooding in your home.


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