VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) — One of the spring’s first coastal storms promises to drop rain and leave that all-too-familiar tidal flooding in areas of Hampton Roads. Thursday, public works crews were out in full force, but not just to prepare for the heavy rain in the forecast.
Virginia beach workers were preparing for storms year round. Thursday, as far south as the North Carolina border, and right to the center of Virginia Beach, public works crews cleared storm drains.
“Something like this, where they are talking about, you know, it coming off the northeast, not so much a problem there. It’s going to be more where we have some of our low-lying areas,” said Drew Lankford, Virginia Beach Department of Public Works spokesman. “Anytime we get heavy rain, we check off Shore Drive. We have areas of the city we always check.”
Crews cleared out vegetation and unclogged blocked storm drains, as well as making sure pump stations performed.
“We built a new [pump station] a couple of years ago out here at the north end of the oceanfront,” Lankford said. “It’s done a great job. It used to be, with a heavy thunderstorm, 20-30 minutes and people were having to ride through water. Now, the pump station pumps it right out to the Atlantic and takes care of it.”
The incoming rain and high winds haven’t forced the city’s hand. Thursday was a just normal work day.
“For low-lying areas, like Virginia Beach, as much as we have to deal with water and the large expanse or area we have to cover, taking care of storm water is really a five-days-a-week full-time job,” Lankford said.