Storm Aftermath: Debris at Sunnybrook Road Bridge
LOWER POTTSGROVE PA – Lower Pottsgrove Department of Public Works employees spent about an hour Thursday morning (Sept. 2, 2021) clearing storm-related debris from both sides of the North Sunnybrook Road bridge, just south of the township’s small but functional Alfred B. Miles Park.
It was far from functional a day earlier, of course, when flood water from Sprogel’s Run made its 8.9 acres temporarily unusable. Rainfall from Tropical Storm Ida gushed Wednesday (Sept. 1) across the park landscape, beneath its sole picnic table, and along its creekside trail. It passed over the roadway and part of the bridge, and around the asphalt too, heading back down to the creekbed.
In its wake the strong, rushing water carried all sorts of junk that collided with the bridge structure. It accumulated against its foundation and bent the adjacent guard rail. In debris piles were wooden pallets, tree limbs, tumbleweed-like collections of twigs, branches, and straw; some good-sized rocks, a few fast-food wrappers, and someone’s T-shirt.
No, they won’t want to wear it anymore.
The power of that water can sweep a human off his or her feet, according to the National Weather Service, just like the gathered detritus set aside by township workers. “A mere 6 inches of fast-moving flood water can knock over an adult,” the weather service warns. “It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away most cars, and just 2 feet of rushing water can carry away SUVs and trucks.”
“It is never safe to drive or walk into flood waters,” it added.
Sunshine, warmer temperatures, and light breezes were anticipated Friday (Sept. 3) by AccuWeather forecasters in State College PA. They predicted a high temperature of 72 degrees in Lower Pottsgrove by late afternoon, accompanied by northwest winds of about 7 miles an hour. Two days of decidedly drier weather is likely to make Miles Park accessible again soon.
Some advice if you visit: wear comfortable, water-repellent footwear. Walking along the park’s sodden ground Thursday was a squish-by-step experience.
Photos by The Posts