Heavy rains push Tell City utilities to the limit

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New reserve police officers appointed

Staff Writer

TELL CITY – At a regular meeting of the Tell City Board of Public Works and Safety, members reviewed the aftermath of the extreme weather that hit southern Indiana recently. A series of intense rain events last week deluged several Tell City streets with lakes of standing water, inhibiting traffic in some cases.

According to Wastewater Treatment Plant Superintendent Bruce Badger, the wastewater department has received numerous emergency callouts over the past two weeks to manage the fallout from recent storms.

Mother Nature left in her wake pump and power failures, flooded corners and a great deal of debris blocking storm-water inlets and the wastewater plant’s headworks. He also reported numerous homes in the area suffered from flooding in their basements due to the storms.

Badger also said four alleys in town suffered cave-ins recently. Excavations at those sites revealed several points where water lines had been damaged and needed repair. According to Badger, repairs have been made and the holes in the affected alleys have been filled.

Mayor Barbara Ewing asked Badger if there was any connection between these separate events, but he affirmed that these events did not stem from any systemic cause.

“These cave-ins have no physical relation to each other,” he said. “Their only connection is age.”

Badger offered praise for the city workers who dealt with the recent deluges, saying, “I would like to thank the employees who got out in the middle of the night for their hard work and dedication.”

The board expressed their gratitude as well, with Ewing saying that each board member echoes Badger’s sentiment.

“Everyone was doing everything they could to deal with these unusual rain events,” Ewing added. “The city system was literally at full capacity, especially on Wednesday, but we fared well all in all.”

Residents should see a more welcome body of water soon as Tell City Water Board member Gerald Yackle reported the filling of Tell City’s swimming pool should begin Friday. He estimated it will take about three days to get the 400,000-gallon pool to full capacity for the summer season.

New Police Reserves

In other business, Tell City Police Chief Greg Hendershot asked the board to approve Christopher Humphrey, John Gebhard, Major Aishe and Zachary Taylor to begin service as reserve police officers. He added that each of them had successfully completed all training required by the state. The board approved the candidates and they will soon begin field training and orientation with full-time officers in the Tell City Police Department.

Badger recommended that full-time inspection be conducted during the construction of a lift station at the new hospital facility. Engineer Associates, a Tell City-based firm, offered to perform that service, provide reports and handle requisite paperwork on the project at a cost of $9,000. The board approved the bid and Badger expects the construction to be done before the first snowfall.

The board approved a glow run and walk benefit to support a young girl battling cancer. The event will begin at 8 p.m. June 21 at Sunset Park behind the floodwall. Entry forms will be due June 7. Participants will be asked to contribute $10 per child and $20 per adult.

The board was pleased that the event will take place in a safe location.

“You’ll also have a good view,” Ewing added. “There’s a nice reflection off the river at night.”