City Asks Residents to Cut Water Use During Heavy Rains

You can help save yourself, your neighbors and everyone who lives downstream from flooding problems by taking a few steps to reduce the chance of flooding.

From the Wauwatosa Department of Public Works:

The National Weather Service has forecast heavy rain and issued a flood watch for all of southeastern Wisconsin through Friday. As a precautionary measure, the City of Wauwatosa is encouraging residents to reduce the risk of sewer overflows and basement backups by reducing the amount of water they use.

Using less water now, reduces the amount of water flowing into the sewer system during heavy rainfall. Here are some simple ways to help (source: MMSD):

  • Take shorter showers and skip baths (10 to 25 gallons of water vs. 70 gallons)
  • Turn off the water while brushing teeth or shaving (saves 8 gallons a day)
  • Delay doing the laundry or running the dishwasher until a day or two after the rain stops.

Here are some easy and quick preventative steps residents can take to reduce the risk of basement flooding or backups. The best way to have the greatest prevention impact is to move water as far away from the foundation of your house as possible.

  • Make sure your downspouts are connected and draining away from the house
  • Add temporary extensions to the downspouts to move water even farther away from the house
  • Add temporary extensions to your sump pump (should be one pipe size larger than the hose on your sump pump; for example: 2” hose to extend 1 1/2” discharge)
  • Move boxes, furniture and household items up off the floor or out of the basement

Wauwatosa is undertaking major improvements to its aging infrastructure. However, heavy rains can overtax the system and Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewer District’s (MMSD) capacity to handle sewer flows. Residents can help by using less water during days of heavy rain. For more tips on how you can help reduce water use, please go to http://v3.mmsd.com and click on “What You Can Do to Help” button.

The City of Wauwatosa asks that residents “adopt” a sewer catch basin located in front of their house or the end their streets. With more than 6,600 catch basins and inlets in the city, employees are not able to keep them clean during storms. By removing twigs, sticks and debris that block the basin, water will be able to flow quickly into the storm sewer system.


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