Ida can bring flooding to region, Central Pa. prepares

Local News

BLAIR COUNTY, Pa. (WTAJ) — With Ida’s torrential rain and damaging winds barreling its way towards Pennsylvania, flooding is expected on Wednesday into Thursday.

And, William Rogers, an Altoona resident, still recovering from the 100-year storm that hit Central Pa earlier this summer.

“Right now my landlord is in the process of fixing my basement right now because of the water damage,” Rogers said.

Just down the road from Rogers, Altoona Public Works workers are hard at work making sure all of the cities storm drain grates are clear of debris.

“We’re just trying to make sure that everything is going to be as clear as possible,” Alan Hyts said.

In addition, public works ordered 120 sandbags to use just in case they’re needed on Wednesday going into Thursday.

EMA Director Mark Taylor said they have put their swift water rescue team in a ready state to act immediately should they have to make a rescue or evacuations.

“Pretty strong possibility for flash flooding because the ground is already saturated so those areas that we are used to seeing flooding we can expect some problems there,” Taylor said.

County officials have already started lowering the dam and they will do this gradually over the next couple of days so it will accept more water.

“So we shouldn’t have any problems there,” Hyts said.

So while emergency workers are preparing for the worst, Rogers says right now is the time to hurry up, and wait.

“Whatever happens you can’t change it right? The title waves come you can’t just say stop it’s just gonna keep coming,” Rogers said.

Public Works also said often times there’s little they can do if the water starts getting high because in many cases where that’s happening they have poor drainage.

They also said the engineering department is currently setting up a study to identify problem areas and fix them.

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