Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Rocks in bayou blamed for residential flooding scare

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CENTRAL - A bunch of large rocks at the end of a culvert are concerning to one Central resident. He tells 2 On Your Side that those rocks are blocking the flow of water along Beaver Bayou.

Bruce Prestridge isn't an engineer, but says the water in the bayou can drain a whole lot faster if those rocks weren't in the way of the flow line. He's talking about the area of Beaver Bayou that flows under Wax Road.

"I mean, you can see the problem, that's a dam," he said.

Prestridge lives about a half mile from where the bayou flows under the road. In the last year, since the construction of a sidewalk over the bridge, he says the water has been filling the bayou and not draining fast enough.

"I noticed the water was coming up a lot more frequently, getting close to coming in my house," he said.

He took a walk and saw the rocks. He estimates that there are eight to ten inches of water being held back by the rocks.

Mayor Junior Shelton says the sidewalk project was funded by state dollars and the rocks were put there by the contractor to prevent erosion to the culvert. But Prestridge says instead of the water passing through the culvert onto the other side of the road with ease, it's being held back.

Shelton met with Prestridge last week to take a look. Shelton says he agrees that the rocks were probably not put there correctly and has sent a request to Department of Transportation and Development to further investigate.

The thought of what could happen if that water doesn't drain quickly brings up old memories of the August 2016 flood. It's why Prestridge is asking someone to take a closer look, so the water goes where it's supposed to.

DOTD says it will check to make sure the rocks are not impeding flow and are placed properly to prevent erosion.


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