Dangers After the Storm

tree de barkedWhat a ride with Sandy, our area was hit by wind and rain knocking down trees and flooding a few areas, making it a little difficult getting to work going around road blocks and dodging the downed trees that had been blown over.

The ponds made it through the storm with no problems, a little extra full but the outlets were kept clear and monitored every 8 hours. Tuesday morning they were at their fullest from the rains over night. As I said in the previous post anything can happen.

We took a walk through the woods to assess any damage and found a few trees down, good for fire wood but bad for potential flooding in months to come.

The trees that fell ended up falling into the creek and the first picture shows the bark rubbed off from passing debris. The potential of these branches collecting other branches and debris are high. If this happens it will create a dam, backing up water until it can’t hold it any longer and either break or start diverting the water another direction changing the course of the creek.

The reason this is bad is if it breaks, the rush of water can be a flash flood downstream and if it is re-routed there will be erosion taking silt, stone and soil down stream and basically losing property downstream and eventually to lake Erie.

Over the years we’ve seen this happen again and again from winter storms and spring rains, dams are built and broken only to have the debris get caught and start a new dam downstream a little farther.

This is what I was talking about in the last post, if your pond is fed by a stream or field drainage this debris can end up in your pond and block the outlets, creating blockage that could allow the water to top over the dam which then could start erosion and dam failure.

Our little walk up the creek and around the corner revealed even more substantial trees in the creek causing a bigger risk of a bigger snag that could dam up the creek, seen in the picture below. It sounds easy to move these trees out of the creek but to get here we need to go down a 60’ cliff with the tractor which is not a good idea unless it is very dry. So if a problem does come up we’ll need to do it by hand or wait till next summer to get them removed. Part of the hazard is two house down steam and a bridge.

Large trees over the creekWe’ll keep taking walks to check on the creek and any problems that may arise.

Monday we started seeing many yards with  ponds in them from the heavy rains, give them a few days and they’ll be gone.

After 12 hours we have our power back on, very thankful we didn’t get hit as hard as expected. And understand what those are going through who have lost power and won’t have it back for a week or more. Do the best you can, stay safe and keep your cool.

About the Author: Darrell Rhoades is the founder of Whatpond.com. A one man business, works full time in tool & die. It all started when he built his own pond for the family. Ran into pond issues and started the research with pond suppliers and conferences for pond management. He writes about pond building and pond management and sells pond management supplies, aeration & fountains and Practical hands on experiences at Whatpond.com. . No physical store, but has items in stock.