Crews ask for public's help to clear Minneapolis' 55,000 storm drains

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After the storm that brought rain and snow to the city, Minneapolis was kissed by sun Sunday, prompting the beginning of a meltdown. 

Fire hydrants there are now free from snow and city crews want you to do the same for your storm drain.

“So, as the snow is melting, the water has a place to go,” said Lisa Cerney, the Minneapolis City Engineer.

With layers of snow piled up along the curbs, Cerney says crews have been clearing problem areas for days.

“We have a number of areas that we know are known low spots, so we prioritize those low spots and are now responding to those 311 complaints,” Cerney said.

In fact, over the last few weeks, crews have cleared more than 650 catch basins.

Where they haven’t cleared, ponding water has created a mess.

“It makes it difficult for people to walk through, bike through, drive through whether it’s a vehicle or a bus,” Cerney added.

With rain in the forecast and 55,000 storm drains in Minneapolis alone, crews have their work cut out for them.

“The biggest concern is really refreezing and if it refreezes at night, it causes significant rutting again which causes significant difficulty getting around the city,” Cerney said.

City officials are asking residents to do their part and clean with they can. If you spot an area starting to pool, however, they ask you to call 311.