Neighbors Lament Delayed Water Pipe Repairs

Tommy Lewis sent in this photo of the water that has been leaking since the first week in February, 2016.
Tommy Lewis sent in this photo of the water that has been leaking since the first week in February, 2016.

Lucia Leggio also said the water main under the corner of North White and Grand Route Saint John has been leaking since the first week in February, 2016 and would like to know when the situation will be repaired.

leakinghydrantCaroline Murphy Christman indicated there is also a fire hydrant that has been leaking on the corner of Desoto and N. Dupre.  She said she contacted the city about it early last week. 

Neighbors are encouraged to call 311 to notify the City of New Orleans about the length of time that the water has been leaking. Folks can also call the Sewerage and Water Board at
Phone: 504-529-2837 | Fax: 504-585-2455 |


Joseph Becker, General Superintendent
625 Saint Joseph Street Room 311
New Orleans, LA 70165
Phone: 504-585-2365


WWL-TV featured this situation in a report two days after this post.  You can see Bill Capo’s report in the link below:


Drains to Get Cleaned and Marked January 21

Would you like to help?   Please call Ms. Roberts at 504-942-3856

Everyone will meet on the steps of the New Orleans Museum of Art 10 a.m. January 21st

The Sewerage & Water Board Environmental Affairs Department is planning a storm drain cleaning and marking event  January 21, 2016.


They will meet in front of NOMA and walk through the park down Lelong Drive and Esplanade Avenue cleaning and marking storm drains.

bluerackcleansdrainStorm drains often become clogged with dirt, leaves and garbage.  Blocked catch basins prevent stormwater from entering the drains which contributes to street flooding. Part of the Sewerage and Water Board’s mission is to inform residents of ways to prevent flooding and improve drainage and water quality.

Because storm drains flow directly in to Lake Ponchartrain, NOT to wastewater treatment plants, storm drain marking is an essential element of the city’s stormwater pollution prevention program.

Rainwater picks up street litter, yard waste, lawn fertilizers, pesticides, pet waste, and oils and fluids from driveways and streets. The first inch of runoff from a storm generally carries 90% of the pollution and causes at least half of water quality problems.

The storm drain marking program is a hands-on project for volunteers who are interested in educating the public about nonpoint source pollution prevention. The markers are placed on storm drain inlets and intend to remind citizens to help protect our waters from pollution that can be harmful to fish and wildlife and increase weed and algae growth.

Even the best plan for managing watersheds and controlling non-point source pollution cannot succeed without community participation and cooperation.

Volunteer Opportunity Fact Sheet

Project Name: Storm Drain Marking in Orleans Parish
Agency Name: Sewerage & Water Board of New Orleans Department of Environmental Affairs
Contact Person: Scott Finney
SWBNO Storm water Management Program
Contact Phone: (504) 942-3855
Contact Email:
Contact Fax: (504) 942-3857
Project Date(s) Any dates that are convenient for participants
Project Location Neighborhoods on the east & west bank of Orleans Parish
Project Time(s) Anytime during daylight hours; however, weekends are best
Project Description:
The SWBNO Storm Drain Marking Program relies primarily on volunteers to glue storm
drain markers on or near drainage catch basins and drop inlets in neighborhoods around
the parish. The SWBNO provides the markers, glue, cleaning tools and safety equipment
to participants. Storm water staff instructs volunteers in how to correctly apply markers.

If the volunteer group has not chosen an area to mark, staff can provide maps of
prospective locations and indicate placement of catch basins and drop inlets.

What types of work can volunteers do on this project?
This project usually consists of work teams of 2 or more and entails cleaning a section of
pavement or metal, then affixing the placard. It is a good idea to have someone watching
for traffic, as most of the Parish catch basins and drop inlets are in or near the street.

What age ranges of volunteers will you accept to work on this project?

We will accept volunteers in the range of 12 years and up; however, participants under 18
years of age must be chaperoned by adults, e.g. parents, teachers, scout leaders, etc.

Does your agency require volunteers to sign a waiver of liability?
If so, could you please attach one so that we are able to have
volunteers sign them in advance of events?

None is required.

The Sewerage and Water Board will be marking and cleaning drains soon. YOU still need to maintain them by keeping debris away from the front of the catch basin.

Rex and Nancy are serious about flood prevention and encourage you to clean the storm drains near you!
Rex and Nancy are serious about flood prevention and encourage you to clean the storm drains near you!

drain-rex-nancy2014sep20A few minutes cleaning the storm drains near you can make a tremendous difference in the amount of water in the street during rain events.

If you think the City of New Orleans is going to clean the catch basin in front of your home please rethink that plan. If you don’t clean the catch basin in front of your home it is you who will suffer the consequences. Please consider cleaning the catch basins in and around your home NOW!

A catch basin, which is also known as a storm drain inlet or curb inlet, is an opening to the storm drain system that typically includes a grate or curb inlet at street level where storm water enters the catch basin and a sump captures sediment, debris and associated pollutants. Catch basins are able to prevent trash and other floatable materials from entering the drainage system by capturing such debris by way of a hooded outlet. The outlet pipes for catch basins on combined sewers (sanitary waste and storm water in a single pipe) are also outfitted with a flapper (trap) device to prevent the backflow of any unpleasant odors from pipes. Catch basins act as pretreatment for other treatment practices by allowing larger sediments to settle in the basin sump areas.


In this photo, Tommy Lewis shows the simple tools necessary to prevent flooding on your street.
Tommy Lewis shows just how simple it is to prevent flooding.

It is important to maintain catch basins to prevent storm sewer blockages and minimize the amount of pollutants entering storm sewers which may eventually discharge into local streams and waterways such as Lake Ponchartrain. Clogged catch basins can also result in the ponding of water along streets and parking lots causing a nuisance to motorists, pedestrians and businesses.

How you can help: When you are clearing your sidewalk or driveway, dispose of waste in trash receptacles instead of sweeping it into the gutters or catch basins.

If leaves or other debris are blocking a catch basin near your house or business, remove and dispose of the debris properly. Article from:

Some may remember that the Faubourg St. John Neighborhood Association has reminded people through the years to use their brains and clean their drains.  Anyone who has been through a major storm or regular rainfall in New Orleans knows that clogged catch basins contribute significantly to street flooding.

The pumps can’t pump what they can’t get. If your catch basin is clogged, please clean it today. If you need help, get with your neighbors and clean all the catch basins on your street. If you still need help, write to and we’ll help you get it done.

If your catch basin requires mechanical cleaning or maintenance, call 311 to report the problem.


HERE’S HOW YOU CAN HELP: Clean litter and debris from the catch basins near your house. Also, clean the surrounding curb area, because any litter, leaves, or grass on the street or sidewalk can end up in the catch basin. Do not lift the drain cover or attempt to disassemble the catch basin; just clean what you can see. All you need is a pair of work gloves, a shovel or small rake, and a trash bag. Remember: If your neighbor is elderly or disabled, please help clean their catch basin too.

2) Dispose of trash and lawn clippings in trash cans. Do not sweep or blow yard waste into the gutters and catch basins. Remember: Trash in our streets ends up as trash in our lake!

3) Construction sites or sites with hazardous materials must take special precautions to properly dispose of their paint and chemicals. They should not sweep, blow or hose waste into the catch basins. Report any improper actions to the City of New Orleans by calling 311.

Residents are advised to stay at home during the severe weather unless an emergency makes it absolutely necessary for them to get on the road. The NOPD will ticket motorists who drive faster than 5 mph on streets with standing water.

The following is a list of streets prone to significant flooding during severe weather.

Calliope @ Claiborne towards Tchoupitoulas St
Calliope & Tchoupitoulas St On-ramps
I-10 and Tulane Exit towards Claiborne
Airline & Tulane Ave intersection
4400 Block of Washington
Washington Ave. near Xavier
All surrounding streets to St. Charles flooded, Gravier/Tulane/S Dupre, S Claiborne/Washington.
Claiborne/Orleans Ave.
S Carrollton/Palmetto
Magazine/St Mary
Broad/Louisiana Ave./S.Claiborne
Earhart/Jeff Davis-Carrollton
500 blk of Lake Marina
Canal Blvd/I-10/Navarre
Erato/S Genois/City Park/Carrollton
Washington Ave. near Xavier, Washington
Gravier/Tulane/S Dupre
S Claiborne/Washington
Simon Bolivar & Calliope coming from Loyola Ave under the overpass
Poland Ave from St Claude to N. Claiborne
S. Claiborne at Joseph
Holiday to the Crescent City Connection
Shirley and DeGaulle
DeGaulle under the Westbank Expressway
General Meyer from Pace to Shirley
Richland and General Meyer
MacArthur and Holiday
Garden Oaks
Vespasian and Wall
The City’s Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness is monitoring the severe weather and will keep residents updated through e-mail alert and the Twitter handle @nolaready.

What are catch basins?

Catch basins are the grated storm drains that you see on almost every street corner. They are storm sewer inlets – typically located next to street curbs – that are the entryway from our streets to our pumping system and represent the first step in stormwater collection and disposal. On rainy days, rainwater and anything else on the streets enter catch basins.

How do catch basins get clogged?

Catch basins have grids to prevent large objects from falling into the sewer system. However, the bars are fairly widely spaced so that the flow of water is not blocked. Consequently, many objects fall through.

What are the consequences of clogged catch basins?

When catch basins get clogged with recently fallen leaves and debris, water can no longer be drained from the street. Water ponds along streets and can flood intersections and homes. Localized street flooding can be a hazard to the traveling public.

Contrary to popular belief, pet wastes, oil and other materials dumped into catch basins do not go to the wastewater treatment plant, but instead  flow directly into Lake Ponchartrain.  For example: dumping oil into a catch basin can have almost unthinkable consequences. If it reaches a river, lake, or stream, five quarts of oil can create a slick as large as two football fields and persist on mud or plants for six months or more.

It is important to monitor and clean catch basins to prevent street flooding, property damage, and hazards to the traveling public.

How can you help keep catch basins clean?

To lessen street flooding, the City asks residents to help clean the inlets and catch basins near your house or business. The grates of catch basins can become clogged with leaves or litter, especially in the fall and winter. Regularly inspect the grate and remove debris.

Stand on the curb and use a rake or pitch fork to clear leaves, limbs, and debris from the catch basin. Do not attempt to remove the grate, only the debris on top of the grate. Dispose of the debris properly.

The best time to inspect the catch basin in front of your house or business is prior to a rain event. Monitor and clean the catch basin in the fall when the trees are shedding their leaves. When the forecast calls for heavy rainfall, remove debris from the catch basin before a storm. After a storm, maintain the openings to catch basins by clearing away any debris.

Disposing of leaves and debris

When you are clearing your sidewalk or driveway, dispose of waste in trash receptacles instead of sweeping it into the gutters or catch basins. Please do not rake or blow the leaves from your yard into the street.. Dispose of leaves and yard debris in trash containers for pick up.

Getting help

If you see a catch basin filled with debris below the grate, or if you cannot clear the basin near your property yourself, call 311. Never attempt to remove catch basin grates, only the debris on top of the grate.

How you can help keep catch basins clean

The following simple actions can help keep streets open and catch basins clean:

  1. Monitor and clean the catch basin near your house or business, especially prior to a rain event.
  2. Stand on the curb and use a rake or pitch fork to clear leaves and debris from catch basins so that water can drain easily. Do not try to remove the grate.
  3. Do not rake or blow leaves from your yard into the street. Bag them at the curb in the parking strip and prepare them for curbside pickup by your garbage hauler.
  4. Dispose of waste in trash receptacles instead of sweeping it into the gutters or catch basins. Dispose of leaves and yard debris in curbside yard debris containers. Pile shoveled snow where it can be absorbed into the ground.
  5. Notify the City at 311 if you cannot clear a catch basin yourself.

What else can I do to prevent flooding?

Use non-phosphorus detergents
Do not pour or throw anything into a storm drain.
Use native plants for landscaping around your home
Limit the use of fertilizers on your yard, especially before a large rain
Pick up pet waste from your yard and while walking your dog
Build a rain garden to capture storm water runoff from your house and yard
Install a rain barrel or cistern to store rain water to water plants
We could change the world
in the night while we are sleeping
The power’s in my neighborhood


Volleyball is Fun


Hello volleyball friends,

We’ll be playing volleyball as usual along Bayou St John this Saturday assuming the weather holds. I think there will be about a 50% chance of rain Saturday, but most of you know the routine… if we get nets set up before it’s raining then we’ll most likely play through any isolated showers. Our schedule is as follows:

9:30am-11:30am Junior League (help us get more kids!)
11:30am-2:00pm Adult “speed” tournament ($5.00/player)
2:00pm-until… Free pick-up games

Don’t forget that we’re also now playing on Tuesday evenings starting at 5pm and going until sundown. Frank is running a doubles tournament Tuesdays ($5.00/player) starting at 6pm, and we may be adding a net of quads tourney action too if there’s demand.

FYI our volleyball group has submitted a proposal to the Sewerage and Water Board to develop sand volleyball courts on vacant land across the street from where we usually set up. A handful of nearby neighbors have raised some concerns about our proposal which has caused the S&WB to consider withdrawing their lease offer. MCVG in the next three weeks will be doing everything it can to convince the S&WB that there is great community benefit to our proposal. We may need you to be present at a meeting or two to show the S&WB that there is in fact great demand for a sand volleyball venue. I will keep you posted when we hear which meetings to attend, but I can say that all S&WB meetings take place at 9am at their headquarters at 625 St Joseph Street (2nd floor conference room). Just to give you a heads up, the Finance Committee will meet June 4, the Executive Committee will meet June 7 and the full board will meet June 19 (see

On a sad note I must deliver some tragic news. Long-time volleyball player John Martinez passed away yesterday morning at the age of forty-six after a sudden bout with lung cancer. He has inspired a group of nineteen of us to visit his home town of La Ceiba on the Caribbean coast of Honduras, and we will miss him dearly on our trip next week. I will pass along information about funeral services as soon as I hear anything.

See y’all Saturday,

Peter Hickman
Volleyball Soldier