With inches of rain last night, and more inches of rain on the way for today, residents of low-lying areas in the District and elsewhere in the metro area are reeling from their 3rd flood in 9 days and expecting their 4th in 10 days. As you bail out your basement apartment, and curse the narrow sewers and the lack of a plan to fix the issue before 2020, it’s valuable to look at what resources are available to you.
DC Water has published a guide to preventing sewer backups and basement flooding (in PDF format, link goes straight to the PDF) that has some ideas for you, including the install of back flow preventers on your house sewer output – but recognize that once they’re closed during a flood, you’d best not flush the toilet, or you’re in for a world of hurt. They also have recommendations for sump pumps and increasing your drainage near your home.
It’s a tough thing to be expecting more and more damage to your home while DC Water is saying that we’re looking at an eight-year plan to make anything better. We’re hoping that they’re going to have a more comprehensive plan to handle the limited capacity of the wastewater system in that part of town.