NEW ORLEANS – The drainage systems in both Jefferson Parish and Orleans Parish were down by one pump each during last weekend’s widespread flooding event.
One pump at the Sewerage & Water Board’s City Park station went out around 5 a.m. on May 12, according to City Officials in Orleans Parish.
A backup generator was immediately brought online, and the pump was restored to service by 6 a.m.
In Jefferson Parish, Drainage Director Mitch Theriot said nearly all of the parish’s more than 180 pumps were active during the rain event.
“Before the rain event, only one [pump] was out of service,” Theriot said. “It was at the Elmwood pump station. It’s a pump that we’re actually replacing the diesel engine, trying to get that done before the peak of hurricane season.”
More than two inches of rain fell on areas of the East Bank of Jefferson Parish within 15 minutes, Jefferson Parish President Mike Yenni said, with a total of between 3 inches and 3.5 inches falling in an hour.
More than 2 inches of rain fell in less than an hour around 5 a.m. in Orleans Parish, the same timeframe that saw the pump go offline, according to the S&WB.
Board officials said they will use the data accumulated over the course of the rainy weekend to help determine which areas should receive the most attention when it comes to future drainage projects.
“My administration has been laser-focused on infrastructure as a whole and stormwater management in particular,” Mayor LaToya Cantrell said. “As we face our issues head on, we are using data and experience to better live with water.”