City to review drainage

Published 8:30 pm Monday, December 15, 2008

By Staff
Pick any decade since the camera was invented and you'll probably find photos of downtown Brewton under water. Flooding for our community has been a problem for as long as we all can remember.
But Wednesday morning's flash flooding - and the four inches of rain that fell in what seemed like a matter of minutes - caught most of us by surprise, especially the downtown businesses that woke up to find offices under water.
What we experienced Wednesday was a deluge - even looking at weather reports the night before, it was hard to predict so much rain in such a short period of time. And certainly no one could have prevented the rainfall. That's of little solace to those who were mopping up water, though.
The weather event is a good time for the city to review its drainage situation, not only the infrastructure in place but the maintenance of it. Mayor Ted Jennings said the city expects to have some engineers look at what happened downtown and in other areas of the city to determine whether anything can be done to prevent it again.
That's a good plan, especially since we know that engineering improvements continue to be made, and some of our infrastructure is aging.
Such improvements will take money we may not have, though, so in the meantime it's a good idea to look at the maintenance of our drainage system and make sure we're doing everything we can.
We expect city officials will be working hand-in-hand with business owners to help try to avoid these problems again. We will never be able to prevent the rain - and in Brewton we probably can't avoid flooding entirely - but maybe we can ease the problem in the future.