Reporting John Shumway
PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Monday’s rain caused flooding across the area.
It is becoming a common sight in some places this summer, including Banksville Road, which was closed again last night near the Parkway West. But the problem there will not be simple to fix.
Rising up with little warning, we have seen our share of covered roads lately. But when roads, normally dry, start getting inundated – it’s a different story.
That’s why PennDOT is concerned about Banksville Road.
“We have a private property owner that has a large pipe that ties into our culvert,” said Angelo Pampena, PennDOT District 11 Allegheny County manager.
On July 10, that pipe collapsed and caused the morning flood that left the driver of a minivan stranded and steering wheel deep in a muddy brown torrent.
Digging out the collapsed pipe did nothing to stop it from happening again that evening.
Since then, PennDOT’s contractor, Lane Construction, has opened the hole even wider. It’s treating the symptom, not the disease.
“We just opened it up,” said Pampena. “We took the corrugated metal pipe that the private property owner put in, and we removed it in that area.”
There were no problems until Monday night’s gully washer overwhelmed the trench.
“It got plugged up, just a tremendous amount of water coming down off of that hill,” Pampena said.
So, PennDOT continues searching for a solution.
Pampena: “We’re working on a new design to try to get the flow better.”
KDKA’s John Shumway: “If it gets nasty again this afternoon could you have the same thing happen?”
Pampena: “Yes, we could.”
Watch Trina Orlando’s report:
Meanwhile, PennDOT’s Dan Cessna detailed the process if the property owners would not respond to fixing the pipe.
“The Department of Transportation, by law, has the ability to go on to private property and remedy the situation and bill the property owner,” said Cessna.
He says they are taking this project on in the interest of public safety.
The Northbound of Banksville Road has since reopened after Tuesday night’s storm. However, the southbound side remains closed.