As the City of Miami Beach continues to roll out its unprecedented, $400 million plan to fight sea-level rise, a top Miami engineer says city officials might have overlooked a key factor:
Back-up generators. The city now relies on a mass system of pumps to shoot flood water out — but what happens when a cane knocks out power to those pumps?
“It is inevitable that sooner or later there will be a major power outage during a time of heavy rain and high tides,” engineer Dwight Kraai wrote in a letter yesterday to Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine and City commissioners.
“Without backup power generators, there will be catastrophic flooding.”
He might have a point.
City Engineer Bruce Mowry, who has played a key role in implementing the city’s pump program, says the new pump stations do have connections where portable generators can be plugged in. But, he tells New Times, the city does need “to make sure that selected pump stations may have permanent generators.”
“The city has been asking for grant funding to purchase more portable generators to supplement our existing units,” he says.
In recent years, the City of Miami Beach has embarked on an unprecedented plan of attack to confront the rising seas and resultant flooding. It has built a range of state-of-the-art stormwater solutions, from valves and pumps to raised roads. All pump stations are electric and depend on FPL for power.
By all accounts, the never-before-attempted civic plan, which took massive political will,
Read More: http://www.miaminewtimes.com/news/miami-beachs-new-anti-flooding-pumps-will-fail-during-hurricane-engineer-warns-8452570