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City works to reduce damage from flash floods

With monsoon season hitting Southern Nevada, flash flooding is possible, and Boulder City is ready and prepared.

“Thanks to the Regional Flood Control District, the city has been able to construct numerous flood-control facilities throughout our community,” said Acting City Manager Scott Hansen. “As a result, we are protected from flash flooding.”

In addition, Hansen said that the flood district has a program that funds the maintenance of the city’s flood-control facilities.

“Most of the maintenance work is performed by the Public Works street division,” he said. “City-staff time and equipment time is tracked and invoices are submitted to the district for payment. The city receives up to $300,000 per year in reimbursement for our flood-control maintenance work.”

The flood district’s General Manager Steve Parrish gave a presentation at Tuesday’s City Council meeting of its efforts to help cities during flood season.

Since its inception, the district has spent $1.8 billion on construction in Clark County to help with flood prevention. It currently has 20 projects under construction, accounting for $132.1 million.

Parrish said that to date in Boulder City it has completed 11 detention basins and 21 miles of channels and underground storm drains, at a cost of $27.9 million that was funded by the flood control district. It still has seven detention/debris basins and 9 miles of channels and storm drains to build.

He also encouraged people to not drive through flooded areas and to stay away from channels, storm drains and detention basins.

“Twelve inches of water is enough to float most vehicles,” he said.

Despite its precautions, Boulder City is not immune to flash flooding.

“We do have several areas of the community that experience nuisance flooding,” Hansen said. “For example, Avenue G and some of the numbered streets off of Avenue G, Adams Boulevard at Avenue B and Cottonwood Street, and some reaches of Georgia Avenue.”

Hansen said he hopes to work with the flood control district and utilize its drainage program to address these areas.

The flood control district also marked the Hemenway Wash as an area of concern for flash flooding, as it carries storm water from the northeast part of the city to Lake Mead.

“This channel is very steep and contains a system of hiking and biking trails which can be very dangerous to use during rain events,” said Erin Neff, public information manager for the Clark County Regional Flood Control District.

”Many of the natural washes within the city limits south of the developed areas are prone to flash flooding. These washes drain to the dry lake bed in the Eldorado Valley,” she added.

Contact reporter Celia Shortt Goodyear at cgoodyear@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9401. Follow her on Twitter @csgoodyear.

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