Charleston City officials preparing for potential flooding ahead of the weekend

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CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCBD) – With high tides expected to be over eight feet this weekend, Charleston City officials are preparing for potential flooding.

On Friday, Charleston Police Captain Jason Bruder told News 2 the department has plans to bring in more officers Saturday morning to monitor floods. He also said the department will be blocking some roads with barricades even earlier than usual, to ensure motorists don’t drive through floods.

According to City officials, the Stormwater and Public Service Departments were working to clear storm drains of debris. The Charleston Fire Department also has two high water vehicles on standby to assist with any rescues, according to City officials.

Captain Bruder said the department is working ahead to avoid rescues.

“That’s our biggest goal with this, especially over tonight and into tomorrow. It’s to make sure people don’t put themselves where they have to get rescued because that’s not just putting themselves at risk, but also other people,” Bruder explained.

As for long-term flood management, Charleston City Councilman Peter Shahid said there are a number of projects in the works to solve the issue of flooding in the Lowcountry.

He said they include the U.S. 17 Spring/ Fishburne Drainage Improvement Project which he said will address flooding at the Septima Clark Parkway, as well as the Calhoun West/Beaufain Drainage Improvement Project which will focus on the Medical District.

The councilman said the City is also still deciding if they will work with the Army Corps of Engineers on a storm surge wall.

“We have a variety of smaller projects throughout the city, that we are trying to implement and are in the pipeline,” Shahid said. “Of course, those things don’t happen fast enough. They cost money and it’s just a matter of making sure we get the priorities straight as to which projects get our attention faster.”

In the meantime, officials urge the community to use caution when driving this weekend. They advise motorists NOT to drive through floodwaters or standing water. If you see a barricade, officials ask that you turn around and find a new route.

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