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Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Destruction from TS Lee

My brother works for Rochester Gas & Electric (RG&E) and has twice been sent downstate for restoration work after Hurricane Irene and TS Lee. He gave me permission to share these photos. You may need to biggie-size the pictures to see all the details.

Today Tom sent me these photos taken in Binghamton, NY, just a few days after TS Lee flooded the city. I've been told this was their "1,000 year" flood --> their "500-year" flood was only in 2006. I can't imagine the level of destruction for this storm alone, let alone just a few years after the last storm.

Can you see the line of work vehicles in the rearview mirror? Crews came from all over and I'm sure this is just a smidgeon of the caravan making their way through the flood waters.

Binghamton has 3 main substations. The crews were there to tear down the substations with it's submerged equipment and rebuild them from the ground up. This substation is closest to the river and had 10 to 12 feet of flood water. If you look at the ribbed radiators just behind the van, you can see the brown high water mark towards the top. The fence to the left is probably only 8 feet tall. Most of the water had receded by Saturday: 5 feet overnight and before they would be allowed in to work Saturday morning and another 4 to 5 feet during the day. He said you could watch the water receding it was moving so quickly.

Last Saturday Tom texted me a video of 30 lb carp inside the substation. They had been washed over the fence. The guys released them back into the wild. 

Mud and dust covers everything. The sewer plant was upstream (and flooded) so the combo of mud, dust and sewage does not bode well for the worker's health. They were warned that (almost) everyone got sick after the last flood.

Can you see Mike off to the left? In the yellow hat? The water was to the bottom of the porcelain insulators over his head.

I'll post Hurricane Irene pictures tomorrow.

1 comment:

Janet O. said...

I can't even fathom what that must be like. We have had a "flood year" with record amounts of snow melt from the mountains and rain in the valleys. Homes and fields along riverbanks have been flooded, but we are talking a foot or two at most, except in basements, which fill up more. Nothing compared to this!