Havre de Grace Not Worried About Flooding from Conowingo Dam
However, there is another problem, according to local leaders.
The Conowingo Dam has two spill gates open as of Wednesday evening, and officials in Havre de Grace say they are not concerned.
“We were advised by the National Weather Service that it’s not going to be an issue,” Scott Hurst, chief of the Susquehanna Hose Company, said Oct. 31.
“They don’t expect any flooding," he continued. "We were certainly prepared for that—I thought we would have a few days’ break and be back at it this weekend, but I think we’re in the clear.”
Previously, city officials were concerned that high water from New York and Pennsylvania would spill into Havre de Grace in the days following the storm.
As of Wednesday, Hurst said: “We don’t anticipate any problems.”
Hurst is so confident there won’t be any flooding that he released the resources deployed for Hurricane Sandy.
“When I realized the high tide and the storm surge they were calling for wasn’t going to come into play [on Tuesday], I released [the swift water rescue team] at about 10 p.m.,” Hurst said.
The National Guard was also stationed by Company 4’s headquarters but was released by Tuesday evening.
Port Deposit posted on its official site that it did not anticipate any flooding from the Conowingo Dam either.
While flooding may not be a concern at the moment, some officials have other issues on their minds as a result of the dam.
Harford County Executive David Craig and State Sen. E.J. Pipkin are hosting a media briefing Thursday at the Conowingo Dam to discuss the impact of major storms on the Chesapeake Bay watershed.
“The main concern is this: that we have floodgates open," John Fiastro, spokesman for Pipkin, said Wednesday. "This is a major storm, and it does create a flow. There are estimates that the flow will remain above 100,000 cubic feet per second, which is not nearly what it was last year, but it is enough to provide a scouring effect.”
Fiastro said that sediment which contains chemicals will then travel into the Chesapeake Bay from the dam.
The press conference will be in the afternoon on Nov. 1.