Press Releases

Update from SWBNO on April 10 Weather Event

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, April 10, 2024 3:07 PM

Today New Orleans experienced heavy rainfall with several drainage pumping stations recording between 5 to 7 inches of total rain with high rain intensities at times. This surpasses our capacity to handle one inch of rain per hour for the first hour and half an inch of rain every hour after. This means it takes roughly five hours for three inches of rain to be drained and pumped out of our city, especially low-lying areas.  Even after the rain stops, it will take some time for the stormwater to clear. 

Going into today’s storm, we had 40.5 megawatts of 25 hertz power available, which is not optimal. At peak demand, our system needs 44 megawatts of power. As typical in storms, and considering our fragile power system during heavy rain and wind events, we have had some issues with power - especially with our back-up EMDs. We are seeing higher canal levels around Drainage Pumping Stations 1, 3, and 6, but we expect they will drop as the rain stops. As always, we will perform a full after-action report to see what occured and what can be improved moving forward.

Our Operations Team continues shifting available power assets where needed and we appreciate the men and women in our utility and across all City departments who are working in the elements. During intense rain, the mission shifts from keeping the streets dry to draining them as quickly as possible. If possible, residents should check to make sure that their catch basins are clear of leaves and debris.

Please continue to stay weather aware and follow our partners at @NOLAReady to receive alerts, especially as it relates to parking restrictions.

We have a Pumping and Power Online Dashboard that displays locations and status of our Drainage Pumping stations. Pumps are operating at stations that are saying “ready for rain” which means the dashboard appears to be having technical difficulties in getting data from some stations. We will contine to make improvements and updates. 

Read More in the Attached Document

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