BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - As heavy rainfall threatens our area, crews are preparing as best they can. Torrential rains are a nightmare scenario for the east Biloxi road project.
When residents in east Biloxi see a downpour in the forecast, they prepare for the worst.
"When it rains, it floods all back here," said resident William Newman.
Another resident, Harriet Mitchell, agreed, "When the heavy rains come, the streets get flooded severely. It pools up in the streets, it floods right in front of the house over there, sometimes right here on the corner."
They've been dealing with flooding on top of already stripped down roadways for years now. The whole area of east Biloxi north of the railroad tracks is undergoing a massive infrastructure overhaul. But, the progress has brought plenty of headaches along the way, for both residents and construction crews.
John Cowart is the general superintendent with contractor Oscar Renda for the current project north of the tracks. He said there are methods of relieving the area of standing water to an extent using pumps. But because this area is so highly influenced by the tide, incredibly heavy rains are a different story.
"When this happens, there's really nothing we can do. At that point, we have to just turn the pumps off and wait for the rain to stop," said Cowart.
Oscar Renda owns six pumps, rents two more, and has access to many more if needed, but Cowart says once the water in the bay rises beyond the outflow, the pumps do no good. And he said the problem isn't isolated.
"During all the large rain events it doesn't just flood on the north project. Yes, the roads are in bad shape and that compounds the problem, but Highway 90 floods, areas south of the track flood," said Cowart.
And he said all he and his team, and the residents can do, is hope for the best.
Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday are all considered alert days by the WLOX First Alert Weather Team because of the heavy rain expected.