Drainage problems cause slushy mess for Memphis residents

By Jamel Major - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Every time it rains on Eastern Drive, Shelagh Doody's front yard becomes a slushy mess.

"I can't walk anywhere cause I don't drive," Doody said Thursday. "He can't drive anywhere because his whole car will basically go under."

Memphis City Public Works officials say recent rains and a buildup of leaves have clogged the drainage system.

"One of the things you'll see is if the leaves aren't bagged properly and if they build up in the gutter," Doody said. "Eventually those will get into the drainage system and cause obstructions."

The backup has created all sorts of headaches for Doody and others on her street.  Some neighbors say trash bags have been floating in street for several weeks.

"We have to end up chasing our trash bins all the way down up to Summer Avenue," she said.

Responding to complaints Thursday, maintenance crews brought in equipment and spent the day clearing the drainage line.

"Once we get done here we'll work with Community Enhancement to get a street sweeper in here to run down this street and collect as much as we can," said Robert Knecht of Memphis Public Works.

Officials are now relying on the public's help to keep the problem under control.

"To bag as much of their yard waste as possible and try to keep as much of the debris out of the gutters," Knecht said.

And neighbors hope this will help solve the problem.

"I think if we could get it picked up on a regular basis more people will probably be raking their yards better, and we won't have the problem of getting things stopped up in the first place," Brandon Armbruster said.

If you're experiencing drainage problems you can call the city's drain maintenance number at 901-357-0100.

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