Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Crews clean storm drains to prevent major flooding in East Baton Rouge

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BATON ROUGE- Crews used high pressure hoses and vacuums to clean out clogged storm drains across East Baton Rouge Parish that have been neglected over the years. 

They hope this will prevent major flooding, which can turn roads into rivers at the drop of a hat.

"South Louisiana gets the most rain in the country compared to anywhere else," City-Parish spokesman Mark Armstrong said. 

He says drainage systems clog up over time if maintenance isn't regularly done. 

"Your drain systems need to be maintained and over the decades, East Baton Rouge Parish has not necessarily kept up with the work to maintain it. There is debris that has built up over the years," Armstrong said. 

Right now, Armstrong says more than two inches of rain in an hour will flood some streets. 

The goal of these cleanings is to help clear away rain as fast it falls, so it doesn't get into homes or businesses. 

"We can't stop roads from taking on water from heavy rain events, but we can reduce the potential of it affecting a structure or a business," Armstrong said. 

The City-Parish says it knows how quickly the weather can change, but it will take two years to clean catch basins, storm drains, and clear ditches across the parish. 

The work is expected to cost about $40 million and will be paid for with American Rescue Plan money. 


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