Wednesday, September 4, 2013

2013 Flood No Laughing Matter - Flooding and Street Maintenance Could Cost Mayor Blad His Job

Corner of Yellowstone and Flandro - Main Light going into the Costco
and Retail Center.  Photo Provided by Riley's Hotshots.
The City of Pocatello has a love hate relationship with it's streets.  Yesterday it was hate.  The deluge of rain yesterday brought flooding throughout the Pocatello/Chubbuck area causing road closures and more clean up for an area just drying out from the last round of rain.  Although significant rainstorms occur in the Intermountain West, the length and strength of this storm set it apart from the more common squalls.  In addition, significant thunder and lightening added to the concerns and danger of the storm.

Making matters worse, the Pocatello stormwater system has failed for the second time in less than a month.  The Center Street Underpass which had extensive work done 12 years ago flooded yesterday and remained closed through 6 am this morning.  The system has a 24 inch pipe to keep flooding to a minimum but has been overpowered by the tremendous force of water coming through.  Several believe that the system must have a blockage adding to questions of why the Pocatello Street Department has not maintained the system adequately.

Residual water from yesterday's flood
at the Westwood Mall in Pocatello.  Background
storefront is Cal Ranch.  Photo by Riley's Hotshots
In addition, many arterial roads have tremendous wear and tear in the form of potholes.  Hiline road near Syringa Elementary has one pothole that could significantly damage a car or motorcycle if not addressed soon.

Why could all this cost Mayor Blad his job?  Back to love and hate.  Many will remember Former Mayor Roger Chase was elected 12 years ago for these precise reasons, flooding and road maintenance.  Now with  Chase and Paul Sheppard running against Blad, he should be looking over his shoulder. The thought of Pocatello back sliding into poor road quality after investing so much to get to good quality will be a tough pill to swallow for many voters.  Will it be enough to cost Blad?  Only time will tell.

To see more of Kyle Riley's photo's visit Riley's Hotshots.