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Small City Escapes Big Damages Due to Successful Mitigation Practices

BUNKER HILL VILLAGE, TX – In a city with a population of 3,500, only one house in Bunker Hill Village suffered extensive damage from Hurricane Harvey. Homeowners credit the city’s proactive approach to mitigation.

“We know storms are coming. If you are not prepared, you need to get prepared,” said Steve Smith, the city’s director of public works and building official. “How well you get through the storm depends on how well prepared you are.”

During the last 13 years, the city of Bunker Hill Village has spent more than $20 million on drainage projects to combat flooding. The city council committed an additional $7.5 million in drainage funds over the next 10 years and established a drainage committee that is charged with making recommendations to the city council for projects.

One of the first mitigation projects in Bunker Hill Village began in April 2009 after a major flooding event. The city started with the installation of major conveyance lines that transport either natural or manmade storm water runoff. The lines were designed to support water volume consistent with 100-year floods.

Drainage boxes were another mitigation project adopted by the city for flood prevention. The boxes, which range in various sizes and materials, were placed in the ground near areas of standing water to help facilitate proper water drainage and avoid property damage.

When Bunker Hill Village experienced the next flood in 2015, damages were less extensive as a direct result of the mitigation practices implemented in previous years. In April 2016, another flood occurred and damaged only 13 homes which further proved the success in proactive approaches to mitigation.

During Hurricane Harvey, public works employees consistently checked the drainage on the main roadways while residents maintained the drains on their local streets in check. Between the bands of rain, police officers and residents simultaneously raked out pine needles and other debris in all the neighborhoods.

As Smith said, “It was a team effort that helped make everything work.”

For additional information contact: • https://www.fema.gov/what-mitigationhttps://library.municode.com/tx/bunker_hill_village/codes/code_of_ordin…

Last updated June 3, 2020