MoDOT making sure roads and drains are clear ahead of heavy rainfall

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VALLEY PARK, Mo. - Our forecast for Friday calls for very heavy rain over a short amount of time making flash flooding is a major concern. And that means area roads may quickly go underwater. Unlike with snow, there’s no pre-treatment for too much rain in too little time. So, crews for the Missouri Department of Transportation are doing what they can to make sure drains and sewers do their jobs.

"What we’ve been focusing on are our drains and our inlets, things like that, making sure they’re clear. Making sure there’s no debris on the roadways, on those shoulders, that could get into those drains and back them up," said MoDOT St. Louis District Maintenance Engineer Bob Becker.

Once the roads and drains are clear, it’s a waiting game to see exactly where the heaviest rain will fall and how area streams will react.

"When we get information on that, we get our crews out there as fast as we can to either get things cleaned up or set barricades up to make sure the roads are safe," Becker said.

And those barricades are there for a reason. No one should be driving on water covered roadways.

"We don’t want people driving through the water or driving around those barricades. This happened several times last time. We don’t know what’s happened underneath that roadway. It may look fine, but it may have got washed out underneath. You drive out there and that road collapses. We don’t want anybody getting hurt," Becker said.

Becker said that once the heavy rain moves out, MoDOT will turn its attention to the potential for snow Saturday afternoon, with plenty of crews ready just in case.

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