PBOT encourages people to adopt a storm drain this season - KPTV - FOX 12

PBOT encourages people to adopt a storm drain this season

Posted: Updated: Sep 19, 2017 01:18 AM
Image: KPTV Image: KPTV
PORTLAND, OR (KPTV) -

It may not officially be fall yet, but it’s sure starting to look like it.

Now that the rain has started, the Portland Bureau of Transportation will start to keep an eye on things like storm drains to avoid flooding.

PBOT’s spokesman, Dylan Rivera, said they can clog if people don’t help clear them of leaves and other debris.

“It’ll back up and start creating ponding in the street,” he said.

One of Portland’s leafier areas, the Irvington neighborhood, has storm drains that already have leaves in them.

“We really need the public’s help,” said Rivera.

PBOT is encouraging people to adopt a storm drain.

The city has more than 58,000 of them and Rivera says they cannot reach all of them without help from the public.

Jennie Perlmutter lives in the Irvington neighborhood and says although they usually get pooling in front of their house during a wet day, she’s glad to see the rain.

“I’m very happy about it. It was very hot this summer so it’s definitely a nice, welcomed change,” she said.

A change in the weather might create a change in a homeowner’s routine. 

PBOT reminds people to try and clear storm drains before it starts raining.

“Right now, it’s easy to find these grates and storm drains in your neighborhood, but imagine during a heavy rainstorm. You don’t want to be out there looking around,” said Rivera.

Frederic Scheer said last year, he remembers having to avoid walking through water in the road.

“The puddles around my house... I couldn’t really cross the street because the puddles were so deep and I didn’t want to walk through them,” he said.

It’s exactly what PBOT wants to avoid.

Rivera said PBOT also wants to remind people that they should not try and lift the storm drain grates themselves.

“When you’re on foot, every few steps out of your direction can be much more of an inconvenience. So it really helps everyone if we can keep our streets clear of ponding water,” said Rivera.

Rivera says Portland residents living in “leaf districts” will get a mailer in the next month about Leaf Day service, which starts in November. 

And if a drain is still clogged after it’s been cleared, PBOT’s maintenance dispatchers are always available at 503-823-1700.

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