Storm Drainage System Performed

The five-to-six rainfall Monday heralded the City of Tulsa’s signfiicant investment in the flood control/stormwater management program in the city limits.
Public Works Director Charles Hardt said city’s flood control system, which is a model program in the nation, performed as it was designed, with creeks overflowing to detention ponds and the stormwater collection system.
Tulsa’s streets and storm inlets were briefly overwhelmed with a large amount of rain in a short period of time, and many motorists who drove into high water at underpasses and lower-lying areas, and became stranded. The Tulsa Fire Department was called upon to rescue people in at least four vehicles stuck in the high water in low-lying areas.
The City of Tulsa requests that any property owner in the city limits of Tulsa that experienced structural flooding during Monday’s rain – in homes, business, garages – to contact the Mayor’s Action Center by email at or 596-2100, and report the flooding. This will assist City engineers in tracking repetitive flooding across the city.
Monday’s rain totaled 5.2 inches according to the National Weather Service – just over one-third of the amount of the 1984 Memorial Day flood. Since that time, the City of Tulsa has invested hundreds of millions of dollars in flood control projects and stormwater improvements, especially in the Mingo Creek area where flooding in the 1970s and 1980s resulted in more than $200 million in damages to property and 17 deaths. Because Tulsa’s program is the national model, property owners within the city also are offered the lowest flood insurance rates in the United States.
The City also invests in the continuous maintenance of the drainage system, ensuring that ditches, inlets and drains are free of debris that would hamper water flow. Following the Monday night storm, Public Works personnel checked storm drains citywide to find blockages and clean out drains as needed.

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