Ms. Murray is mistaken. In fact, the plant bypass gates are operated in accordance with a directive, dated May 27, 2009, which requires the gates to be in fully open (lowered) position when “heavy rainfall is expected within the upcoming 4 to 8 hours.” This directive was followed on the date in question. Both of the gates Murray refers to were fully open and could not in any way have contributed to any basement flooding.
The storm that occurred on July 8 was very intense and it caused extensive flooding in various parts of Portsmouth. Over one inch of rainfall was recorded at the treatment plant within a 30-minute period. This amount of rain exceeded the capacity of the Grandview Avenue sewer.
Any Grandview area resident who has experienced recent basement flooding is requested to contact the wastewater department at 354-0241 to report the date, time, and extent of the flooding. This is also requested of any city resident who experiences flooding. Such information is important in the city’s development of its basement protection program.
Richard Duncan, P.E.
Director of wastewater