Crews across Hampton Roads prepare for heavy rainfall, high winds from Hermine

Posted at 3:27 PM, Sep 01, 2016
and last updated 2016-09-01 18:02:51-04

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. - City crews worked throughout the day on Thursday to prepare for the heavy rainfall and winds expected this weekend.

The hum of Virginia Beach Public Works trucks was audible up and down Shore Drive.

"We've got crews in areas that are most prone to flooding, or usually the first ones we get calls on," says Drew Lankford, Department of Public Works for the city.

Lankford says their focus was to check on pump stations, and to also check and clean storm drains of debris.

He says crews prepared sand bags and high water signs, and checked on city buildings and projects like the Lesner Bridge, which will need to be died down in the event of high winds.

"It's kind of an all hands on deck situation. We're just taking everything we do throughout the year and amping it up to a 10 today," says Lankford. "We're not going to alleviate flooding or promise anybody things aren't going to flood, but we are doing what we can."

Crews across Hampton Roads told News 3 that they were making similar preparations.

Chesapeake crews were on Frank Drive, focusing on some of the areas with older systems.

"You have open ditches prone to collecting debris and being clogged up," says Ali Asgharpour, Public Works Operations Manager for the city of Chesapeake.

Asgharpour says one blockage in a ditch could cause issues for the entire street.

While crews say they plan to do similar preparations through Friday, the weekend will consist of mostly watching and waiting.

Public Works officials say they have a fleet of trucks gassed up and ready to go, along with personnel that are on standby for when they need to respond.

Pictures: Hermine in Florida