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Ralston Bridge Work Protects Town From Ivan

RALSTON, PA - A bridge damaged by the January 1996 flooding cut the Town of Ralston, Pennsylvania, in half.

Debris had gathered at another bridge further upstream, forcing the creek through the Town and damaging the downstream bridge.

Although FEMA, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDot) and Lycoming County had done considerable bridge and creek work in the area, residents were justifiably concerned as the rainfall from Tropical Storm Ivan continued in September 2004.

According to mark Murawski, transportation planner for Lycoming County, the residents "were ecstatic when the floodwaters passed without incident." The bridge and creek work had done their job.

FEMA and PennDOT had completed the work a few years earlier through a combination of hazard mitigation grant funds and state transportation contracts. A raising and widening of the upstream bridge had eliminated the debris/obstruction problem and the creek work facilitated the flow through the town.