What the Flood?

East Falls under water! Dramatic pics and video from Ida ’21

This was one amazing storm! Early Wednesday evening (Sept 1st), NBC10’s live broadcast popped up on our Facebook feed, and we watched in amazement as three meteorologists reported on constant emergency warnings about flash floods, tornados, lightning…

“Over here we’re looking at dangerous high winds and power outages — “

“I’m sorry we have to break in, there’s a flash flood warning in — “

“I hate to do this but a tornado has touched down and is heading for Trenton…”

And on and on, for hours! The National Weather Service, at least SEVEN tornados touched down around Philadelphia. You know all those beautiful new Venice Island townhouses and apartments in Manayunk along the river? Some residents were trapped and had to be rescued! Fortunately for The Local, our lair is high in the Wissahickon bluffs over Lincoln drive, so we remained safe and sound (not even a blip in our wifi).

The next morning, we discovered Lincoln Drive at Gypsy Lane was closed and covered with muck and debris — and totally flooded at Ridge Avenue, where the waterfalls across from Wissahickon Bus Transfer station had been submerged by the muddy, swollen creek. The colorful vintage railings here were all ripped out and twisted.

On Kelly Drive, the Schuylkill came up farther than anyone could remember — all the way to the base of Midvale. Cars on Ridge by the Twin Bridges were submerged; basements flooded chest-high. We spoke to lots of neighbors, who have lots of cleaning up to do.

Speaking of cleaning up, we’re very curious to know more about how East Falls’ new river landing fared through the storm. We happened to be zooming in on it Friday when EFDC was checking it out. We’re no experts of course but it certainly looks like it has not swept away as feared. We’ll update this post as soon as we hear whether the ribbon cutting will continue as planned for September 18th (it won’t — stay tuned for new date as the damage apparently was more extensive than first surmised).

We hope you’ve enjoyed these pics from Ida in East Falls 2021. For more videos, please check out our Facebook page where we posted live “walk arounds” throughout Thursday and into Friday, surveying water levels and talking to locals. Thanks to everyone for sharing their pics and videos to our community Facebook page, or talked to us in the streets.

PS read the comments on these posts if you can — there are some good discussions about green space and development, including storm water management concerns we might want to consider as a community.

Falls Bridge comparison, normal levels on Left, Ida levels on Right
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The Local byline reflects community-created content (usually from social media, often from audio/video sources) that we've collected and edited into an article for our website/newspaper.

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