By Emily Le Coz/NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – It could take several weeks before the city fully assesses and repairs damage caused by Saturday’s flash flooding.
The torrential downpour quickly swelled Tupelo’s creeks and choked its drains, causing water to back up into the streets. In most cases, the flooding receded within a half-hour, leaving little damage.
But other areas of the city weren’t so lucky.
“The worst areas were Lynn Circle and the Sand Creek area – Hibner, Antler, Lawhon,” said Public Works Director Sid Russell. “It also flooded at Spanish Village, and retention ponds were at capacity.”
The rain also loosened the asphalt on several roads. Chunks of blacktop cracked off the road bed and floated into people’s yards. Russell said crews are working to identify and repair streets that experienced those issues.
In all, though, the city’s infrastructure performed well considering the circumstances, said Tupelo Water & Light Manager Johnny Timmons. Drains worked, sewers worked, retention ponds worked, he said. But Mother Nature still dealt a mighty blow.
“It just came down so fast, so quick that the system just couldn’t recover,” Timmons said. “When you’ve got a street designed with 42-inch pipes, and you get a 52-inch rain in just a few minutes, you just can’t do it.”
Mayor Jack Reed Jr. commended the departments for quick response during the severe weather, saying residents are in good hands.
The Tupelo Public Works Department invites residents to report areas of road damage caused by recent floods. Crews will be dispatched to clean and repair them. The number is (662) 841-6430.