Many Pasco Co. streets still flooded after heavy rain

- Some Pasco County neighborhoods are still dealing with floodwater. Pumps and crews with vac trucks are working overtime to clear the roads and overloaded drains.

As of Tuesday night, about 30 roads in the county are having some sort of flooding issue.
On Ironbark Drive in Port Richey, some people still can't get out of their driveways. While the trucks removing water are helping in the short term, neighbors are desperate for a long-term plan.

Many people who move to Florida dream of waterfront property. But, not like this. "We moved from the Portland, Oregon area," said Ron Siravo, "so, we know something about rain and how to manage it."

Right now, Siravo's yard is currently a soggy mess of from flood water.

"We moved down here figuring we'd get the bright sunny skies, possibly a little bit of rain but this is a little bit more than we bargained for. Overwhelming," Siravo said.

Days of steady rain have turned parts of Ironbark Drive into extensions of an overflowing retention pond.
"It's bad," said Donald Martin. "It's a river."

"We have to walk along the side of other houses, bring in extra water, really not the best way to live in this point in time," Siravo said. "In this day and age, this really shouldn't happen."

Pasco County officials know it's a chronic problem.

"That particular area is prone to flooding because it's aging infrastructure and in this particular one case, there is no real infrastructure right where it's at," said Emergency Services Director Kevin Guthrie. "So, we have been taking it out all day by way of truck all day long."

And, in other areas like Trinity's Thousand Oaks community, which is only seeing mild street flooding, the county installed a temporary 6-inch pipe, moving water away from a bogged down sewer

"It helps, it helps," said Jessica Alxan whose home is near the pump.

Those are all short term fixes. In the long term, the county is promising transparency and permanent relief for people on Ironbark Drive.

First, the Watershed Flood Mapping project is close to completion, meaning current or future residents will know the risks related to their properties.

Second, the county has contracted a consultant to develop a plan that would take water north through a culvert system. It would cost 2.5 million dollars, plus the purchase of about seven homes. The project will be presented at a meeting in October.

"I'll believe it when I see it," Martin said.

For now, all neighbors can do is keep their eyes on the water level and wait for drier days.

"It all comes down the money, but they need to do the right thing for the people in the area in the community," Siravo said.
If there's any good news, Guthrie says no homes have been penetrated by flood water. "We have had zero homes with water intrusion," he said. "We have come close. We have had stuff come up on patios and onto front door stoops but we have had nothing that has actually penetrated any house yet."

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