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Elmhurst prepares for melting snow, rain

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 19, 2014 4:42 p.m. CDT

ELMHURST – City Manager Jim Grabowski asked residents to help keep street inlets clear Tuesday ahead of this week's rain.

"Hopefully there will be warmer weather coming this week so those issues will go away, but of course, that leads to other issues," Grabowski said.

He said rain mixed with the more than 66 inches of melting snow that's accumulated over the winter could cause flooding.

"Help us clear those inlets of snow so that the water will have a place to go to instead of ponding in the street and possibly on property," Grabowski said.

The city has about 7,000 inlets. Grabowski explained public works crews have been working to clear them in the lower-lying areas of the city first and moving to other areas as they have time.

A city press release stated that crews prepared for rain by clearing off street drains in areas that have had flooding issues in the past. During rain, a patrol monitored them as well, but heavy rain causes snow to wash into the street drains and possibly block them.

The week began with a severe winter storm warning issued Monday by the National Weather Service, but the alerts weren't over. Thursday the National Weather Service issued a flood watch as the temperatures broke 40.

Then temperatures are expected to stay below freezing through the weekend.

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By the numbers

Winter statistics for Elmhurst:

66: Inches of snow that have fallen in the area

21: Days the temperature has fallen below zero

3,300: Tons of salt used by the city

53: the number of water main breaks the city has repaired

41: the number of frozen water service calls to which city crews have responded

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