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Rainfall leads to high volume of service requests for drainage cleaning

Posted at 6:48 PM, Jul 24, 2019

EL PASO COUNTY — It started with severe rain and hail. Now, it's tons of debris across El Paso County.

After this past weekend, a lot of folks have been requesting service.

Calls are mostly first-come, first-serve - and these storms have only compounded existing work.

And even though they don't provide service to private properties, they say homeowners play an important role, too.

John Montoya helps lead drainage efforts for El Paso County Public Works.

He says they're usually busy, but in light of all rainfall, "It's been extra busy with the rains."

"The county's so big and we're only so many so we can only do so much at a time."

They usually get 5-10 calls a day. Now they're getting 10-15 calls a day.
That's a total of 30-35 extra calls a week, on average.

Today, they're in Black Forest clearing this road pipe of any sediment and debris.

"We basically, probably dug out about 40 yards of ditch."

They want to prevent it from getting clogged, which could lead rainfall to wash this road out if - and when - another storm hits.

"It's important that way we get a jump on things, that way the water does go where it needs to go," he explained.
"And we're not trying to do that in the middle of a rainstorm because that makes our job that much more difficult."

But homeowners play an important role, too.

Even though the county's not responsible for their culverts, this crew says its important they get a jump on things themselves.

"[It's] probably only a matter of time before we see significant rainfall," Montoya warned.
"And the number of requests is probably going to go up here in the Black Forest area as well."

The county asks that all homeowners also check their private culverts before the next storm hits.