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Power to 2 drainage pumps tripped off during Monday's rainstorms

The power was restored quickly, according to the Sewerage and Water Board, and was not the reason for the street flooding.

NEW ORLEANS — The New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board revealed electrical feeder lines, leading to two major drainage pumps in the city tripped offline during Monday’s heavy rains. 

The downpour caused widespread street flooding across the city. 

In a statement, the water board revealed Drainage Pump Station 3 in the 7th Ward and DPS 7 in City Park lost power.  The pumps were quickly brought back online. 

 DPS 7 helps drain the Lakeview neighborhood where streets like Argonne and Filmore took on a lot of water.  Lakeview resident Peggy Benson said the water came up to the middle of her front yard.  

“I put a new sidewalk in a couple of months ago, back in February,” Benson said. “We’ve had some heavy rains since then that did not come up this high, but yesterday it did come up this high. The entire neutral ground was totally covered over.” 

SWB Executive Director Ghassan Korban claims it was the 6 inches of rain in a short period of time that caused the street flooding, not the power outages. 

“We had a high intensity of rain and with reliable power or not, some areas were going to be inundated with water and that’s exactly what you saw,” Korban said. “It was localized.” 

Tuesday, a city council committee approved a resolution that would commit $20 million toward a new Entergy New Orleans substation at the water board’s main plant. 

Committee Chair Joe Giarrusso who represents District A on the council says the substation will bring more reliable power to the city’s drainage system. 

“I think the one thing it will improve is make sure there aren’t power issues in the future,” Giarrusso said. “What we’ve heard routinely from Sewerage and Water Board, we had an issue with this pump and the phrase they use is tripped offline.” 

That substation would replace the aging and unreliable turbines that now power the pumps. 

It is expected to be built before the start of the 2023 hurricane season. 

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