Residents of Sackville battle consistent flooding
SACKVILLE, N.B. – Several roads were closed in Sackville Monday, after heavy rain caused localized flooding.
A section of Route 935 west of Sackville to Wood Point was closed, as flooding cut off part of the road, leaving about 650 residents in the communities of West Sackville cut off from the town.
Jamie Burke, senior manager of corporate projects for the Town of Sackville said flooding in this area is common and they have a contingency plan in place.
“We routinely place a fire engine on the opposite side of the flood in the event that we need to mobilize emergency services personnel,” he said, adding that the Town also has an agreement with Dorchester fire to provide support.
A section of Route 106, near Frosty Hollow was also flooded, leaving a couple of cars abandoned on the road.
In town, Lorne Street was flooded at Wellington Street, leading to closures between Dufferin Street and Allison Avenue.
Resident Ed Estabrooks has lived in the area since 1949 and said the area has been flooding regular since the 1960’s. Estabrooks said his property floods at least twice a year, and blamed in on the removal of pumps in the area that used to help remove water during high-tide.
The area around the city uses an aboiteaux system to clear water from the marsh, which is owned by the province. The system uses dikes with a one-way valve to control the flow of the water. During high-tide the valve is shut, and then reopens during low-tide.
“Pumps put back in,” Estabrooks said. “The pump over the dike and a whole new sewer system. Our water gurgles when it comes in.”
Bowser’s construction has also been affected by the constant flooding on Lorne Street. They’re complex is at the corner of Lorne and Wellington Streets and they have had to build a berm around their building with soil to try to protect it from flood damage.
Giles Beland, the general manager, said Monday’s flooding was the second in six months.
“We understand, I mean this is our business, we do infrastructure,” he said. “We know full well that budgets are tight and communities and towns and cities and provinces can only spend so much a year.”
But Beland said he believes it needs to be a priority for the Town.
Burke said the Town knows it’s a problem, but unfortunately water collects on Lorne street with the current drainage system. He said the Town has a proposal in for $4.5 million through the small communities fund through the federal government’s Build Canada fund to deal with the issue.
But the earliest they would be able to start construction was 2016.
“It would be a complete replacement of the underground storm water infrastructure along Lorne street,” he said. ” Which would also include some fixes to the other infrastructure that’s there as well, some increased capacities to the drainage system to allow the water to get out to the aboiteaux much more quickly.”
Burke said they would have to work together with the province and with CN Rail that owns culverts in the area.