PASCO COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) – Flooded streets caused headaches for Pasco County residents Monday. Early morning storms caused trouble on several streets.
Jennifer Letham has lived on Ironbark Drive for 18 years. She said for the last decade the retention across the street has been a major issue.
Letham’s sandbags can only protect her for so long. “The roads used to flood, and then all of a sudden now there’s so much water now that the retention pond was over flowing after that,” she said. “We’re gonna be up all night probably worrying about it. We had to buy our own personal pumps so we have like three mini pumps that will keep it from coming in the house.”
“I don’t like it. I want to move. We have three dogs, two cats, two pregnant women and a 3-year-old living here,” Kaitlyn Motard said.
In New Port Richey Van Doren Avenue looked like a lake.
Jose Zambrano woke up to several inches of ran on his Gulf Drive driveway.
“I’ve been living here for four years, and this happens every time,” Zambrano said. ““Every time it rains it just comes this way.”
Emergency services crews are operating around the clock, pumping flood water into tanker trucks and hauling it off. “We’ve been monitoring this system all weekend long. We’ve had public works crews out over the weekend, 24 hours a day. We called in night crews; we’ve set up temporary pumps. We’ve been sandbagging,” said Kevin Guthrie, Pasco emergency services director.
Guthrie is hoping early efforts will relieve some of the low-lying areas, which are prone to flooding.
“We saw with some of the models, we were going to get 11 to 15 inches of rain so we knew we needed to get way ahead of that, and it is paying off now because we are ahead of it and we only have a few neighborhoods that we’re seeing problems with right now,” Guthrie said.
Pasco County leaders recently identified projects that need to be done to alleviate flooding. Officials said the projects would cost around $30 million. None of those undertakings is funded right now.
Not everyone sees this downpour as a downfall. For some Hudson children, it’s the last hoorah before going back to school.
“It’s amazing and pretty fun,” 11-year-old Steven Kirk said. “My uncle’s out of town right now so when we came to check up on his dogs, we saw the whole street was flooded.”
Meanwhile, on Ironbark ducklings and their mother enjoyed an expanded paddling area from an overflowing retention pond.