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City of Elmhurst News

Posted on: May 18, 2020

Storm Recap 5-17-20

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For Immediate Release 

Date: 5/18/19 

Contact: Public Works, 630-530-3753 

Subject: Storm Recap 5-17-20, Important for residents during a heavy rainfall event 

Elmhurst, IL – The City of Elmhurst experienced a significant rain event yesterday. Precipitation totals indicate parts of Elmhurst received up to 7.88 over the last four days, with 3.11 inches falling on Sunday.    

Elmhurst Police and Public Works Crews worked throughout the night to monitor streets and clear debris from flooded areas. The majority of reports to the City during this storm event included backyard and street flooding.  Street flooding cleared as soon as the heavy rainfall stopped.  

The City’s Public Works crews worked expeditiously to remove debris from clogged inlets and to open City roadways.  All major roadways are now open.  Streets are currently being swept to remove sediment and debris that may have been caused by the storm.  Crews continue to assess street conditions, clear inlets, replace manhole covers and monitor residential street closures.  

All stormwater systems performed properly during the event, but the volume of rain overwhelmed portions of the system’s capacity.  The Southwest Wet Weather Facility was in operation and sewerage was being pumped to the 2 million gallon excess flow tank.  Five homes reported a sewer back up. 

It is important for residents to understand that street flooding will continue to occur during significant rain events as designed by the stormwater detention operation plans. The stormwater mitigation system is designed to relieve homes of flooding by redirecting the water into the streets, which then drains into the detention basins. This can take anywhere between 30 minutes to 1 hour based on the amount of water. Commuters are cautioned to avoid all flooded streets and not attempt to drive through standing water. Playing in floodwater is also extremely dangerous.   

During a heavy rain event, the City often receives inquires on when the Elmhurst Quarry will be open to relieve Elmhurst of standing floodwater. When the water in Salt Creek reaches a certain level, the water will automatically begin flowing into the quarry. The weir works by gravity and does not need human intervention to start taking water from the creek into the quarry system. An additional inlet (sluice gate) can be opened to take in even more creek water. The DuPage County Stormwater Management Team operates the Elmhurst Quarry and is responsible for opening the sluice gate only when necessary.  This system takes overflow water from Salt Creek, but does very little in preventing flooding on Elmhurst streets. During this rain event, the sluice gate was opened by the DuPage County Stormwater Management Team.

Please report street flooding or basement backups by calling the Elmhurst Police Department at 630-530-3050. The City only monitors the City’s official social media pages. Posting on social media or connecting with anyone other than the Elmhurst Police will not help you during an emergency event. The Police Department is equipped with dispatching the appropriate city employees to the scene and also keeps record of the incident.  

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