Water-Related News

Flooded residents wonder about drainage time

Neighborhoods inundated with water might stay that way for another couple days as drainage systems work to keep up with the flooding. Some of SWFL's most important pieces of flood prevention are filled to the brim with storm water.

"It's probably crested right now it's as high as we've seen it," said John Murray, a Pioneer Road resident.

Murray's backyard sits right on Ten Mile Canal, which was built for flood prevention in the 1920s. The canal has flooded over its banks and into yards all along Pioneer Rd. as it travels to Mullock Creek and eventually Estero Bay.

Murray said this is about as high as he's seen it in the 15 years he's lived there.

"We are a little concerned that it's been here this long and staying this long," Murray said.

Civil engineer Dean Martin at TDM Consulting said some communities could take up to 73 hours to drain.

"Until time passes you're going to have water backed up, which that's what it's supposed to do," Martin said.

Martin said state regulations limit how much water can be discharged at a time from subdivisions. Most communities have what's called a "bleeder," a pipe with a three-inch face that discharges water into nearby conveyances and bodies of water.

The limitations give the water time to lose many of the pollutants that run off during rain storms.

"That takes the impurities out before it hits a water body down stream," Martin said.

A Lee County spokesperson said their drainage system is working efficiently and doing what it was designed to do.