ELMWOOD, La. (WVUE) - Jefferson Parish officials said Monday (May 13) that the parish’s drainage pumps worked properly during the weekend rainstorms, but acknowledged that too much heavy rain fell too quickly, which led to some street flooding.
At the time of an afternoon press conference, the parish said it had only received one report of water entering a structure, located on Severn Avenue in Metairie.
The parish has 187 pumps and the drainage department said only one of them was unavailable during the heavy rains. Thirteen of the nearly 190 pumps were not needed during the bad weather, according to parish officials.
Parish President Mike Yenni said flash flooding did occur, but not because of pump malfunction.
"Some pumping capacity was overwhelmed with torrential rain in a short period of time. We closed some roads due to flash flooding and I should note that our streets are sometimes designed to collect overflow rainwater to prevent rainwater from entering properties,” Yenni said.
According to the director of the parish’s Drainage Department Mitch Theriot, the rate at which the rain was falling was at times matching the rate at which the pumps were working.
"If it’s raining hard enough like it was, okay, even though those pumps are discharging water at a great volume, there’s still more water coming in than there is going out, so the perception is the water’s not moving,” Theriot said.
The parish said no injuries were reported and that anyone who had floodwaters enter their homes or businesses should contact the parish drainage department.