Thursday, August 30, 2012
The Fulton Utilities Department and other Central Missouri cities are bracing for heavy rains that may hit Friday and Saturday in the aftermath of Hurricane Isaac.
Central Missourians may get a welcome break from the prolonged drought, but a torrent of rain could create other problems this weekend.
Weather forecasters have predicted from 2 to 6 inches of rain will be dumped on Fulton and Central Missouri as the remnants of the hurricane, now officially downgraded to a tropical storm, moves through the area.
Fulton Utility Superintendent Darrell Dunlap said about five years ago heavy rains hit Fulton in the aftermath of a hurricane.
Dunlap said the situation will be compounded this year because of current extremely dry weather. Because the ground is dry and hard on the surface, heavy rain is expected to run off rather than soaking into the ground.
“This will force more water into our stormwater lines. It also can create flooding that will cause more water to infiltrate into our sewer lines. That can overwhelm our sewage treatment plant with water,” Dunlap said.
Dunlap said one benefit of the dry weather was providing an opportunity for the department to work on sealing and preventing some leaks from stormwater lines into separate sewer lines.