Just When You Thought Things Could Not Get Any Worse – Reading Sewer Main Leaking AGAIN

Another OH SHIT moment brought to you by the City of Reading.  The same sewer main that ruptured and caused MILLIONS of gallons of untreated sewage to be dumped into the Schuylkill River has ruptured again – near the area that was just repaired.  Say it ain’t so Joe!

Of course, the high water from Lee is complicating repair efforts!

Murphy’s Law!

Susquehanna Crests Higher In Wilkes-Barre Than Orginally Reported Due To Gauge Malfunction

The Susquehanna River crested nearly four feet higher in Wilkes-Barre than originally announced.  A gauge malfunctioned that measures the river level.  The river actually crested at a level higher than Hurricane Agnes in 1972 (40.91 feet) and set a record of 42.66 feet Friday morning.

This high level of water is straining the levee system to its maximum.  Water is leaking into downtown Wilkes-Barre through the flood gates on the Market Street Bridge.

The levee at Forty Fort is also compromised and in danger of collapse.  Governor Corbett has strongly urged Wyoming Valley residents to head evacuation warnings.

Evidently it is not uncommon for gauges to malfunction during high water events.

Central PA Flooding Claims Five Lives

Flood waters have claims five lives in the midstate and two people are missing.  Dauphin, York, Lancaster and Lebanon counties all reported deaths related to flooding.

Front Street in Harrisburg has flooded.  The Shipoke section of Harrisburg was evacuated along with the Governor’s Mansion.  Several blocks in Midtown had power shut off to force residents to evacuate.  An 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. curfew has been issued by the mayor’s office.

The Susquehanna River at Harrisburg is predicted to crest at 26.5 feet at around 8 p.m. this evening.

Susquehanna River Reaches 38.82 Feet In Wilkes-Barre

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Luzerne County

Image via Wikipedia

The Susquehanna River had topped out at 38.82 feet in Wilkes-Barre just before 1 a.m. this morning.  By 3:30 a.m. the National Weather Service declared the river had crested just under 39 feet.  An earlier prediction was for a crest of 41 feet.

Unprotected areas like West Pittston, Jenkins Township, West Nanticoke and Shickshinny experienced major flooding.

In Duryea there was a partial levee breach that sent 200 people from their homes to an emergency shelter at Sacred Heart Church Thursday evening.

Wilkes-Barre Mayor, Tom Leighton has just issued a mandatory evacuation order for the Brookside Section of the city due to rising water on the streets.

President Obama Signs Emergency Declaration For Pennsylvania

Map of Pennsylvania, showing major cities and ...

Image via Wikipedia

The POTUS signed an emergency declaration for Pennsylvania due to conditions from Tropical Storm Lee.  The following counties were listed: Adams, Bedford, Berks, Blair, Bradford, Bucks, Cambria, Carbon, Centre, Chester, Clinton, Columbia, Cumberland, Dauphin, Delaware, Franklin, Fulton, Huntingdon, Juniata, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Lycoming, Mifflin, Monroe, Montgomery, Montour, Northampton, Northumberland, Perry, Philadelphia, Schuylkill, Snyder, Somerset, Sullivan, Susquehanna, Tioga, Union, Wyoming, and York.

FEMA will begin working with state and local officials to provide federal assistance to flood victims.  The start date of the emergency declaration is September 3, 2011.

Schuylkill River Crests In Pottstown

According to Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Services, the Schuylkill River appears to have crested at 18.27 feet earlier this morning at Pottstown. 18 feet is moderate flood stage.

The most recent reading at 9:31 a.m. shows the river has gone down slightly to 18.21 feet.  Flood stage is 12.5 feet.  The current prediction is that the river will be back under flood stage at 2 am Sunday morning.

I did a quick check and observed the following:

the Hanover Street Bridge is closed, South Pottstown is closed and traffic is being forced to turn left and the bottom of the exit ramp at Hanover Street, Industrial Hwy is closed, a section of High Street near Pottsgrove Manor is under water and closed (observed from the Route 100 bridge), Memorial Park was closed yesterday, a number of streets leading to Industrial Hwy are closed a few blocks from the highway and the list goes on.  Riverside Drive in North Coventry is only accessible by boat!  Best to avoid those areas of Pottstown and North Coventry.