City of Charleston initiates Active Flooding Mitigation Plan in preparation for July 1st heavy rainfall

July 1, 2024

In light of forecasted potential flooding from excessive rainfall and elevated tides on Monday, July 1, 2024, the City of Charleston is taking proactive measures to safeguard residents and businesses against potential flooding and other adverse impacts. Mayor Cogswell has activated the Active Flooding Mitigation Plan, signaling a concerted effort by city departments to prepare for the impending storm.

Key Points:

  • Critical Period of Concern: The National Weather Service (NWS) Charleston identifies the period between 2:00-7:00 p.m. as particularly concerning, though rain may start as early as noon.
  • Potential for Life-Threatening Flooding: Significant risk of life-threatening and property-damaging flooding.
  • Heavy Rainfall Expected: Rainfall rates could exceed 3 inches per hour.
  • Significant Rainfall Totals: NWS Charleston’s supplemental report forecasts 2.5-3.5 inches of rainfall, but isolated areas could experience 6” or more.
  • High Tide Coincides with Heavy Rainfall: High tide is expected to be 6.3 feet at 5:09 p.m.

Preventative Measures and Preparedness: In response to these forecasts, the City of Charleston has implemented a series of preventative measures and preparedness protocols aligned with Mayor Cogswell’s Active Flooding Mitigation Plan:

  • Parking Information: Free parking is available from today at 11:00 a.m. until tomorrow at 8:00 a.m. at the 99 West Edge Street, Charleston Tech Center (997 Morrison Drive), and the 34 St. Philip Street parking garages. When exiting the garages, press the call button and inform the operator you are taking advantage of the city’s free storm parking.  Residents are asked not to use parking garages in the Medical District, which are intended for staff and patients.
  • Traffic and Transportation Measures: The Charleston Police Department (CPD) has loaded barricades and will place them in advance of flooding on vulnerable streets. Mobile signage will be in place to warn motorists about flooding. Updates on road closures will be provided through this link.
  • Stormwater Management: Multiple pumps will be deployed today to manage water levels. The city will monitor the Church Creek Basin and clean city drains and ditches to mitigate potential blockages. Stormwater crews are currently operating under rainy day protocols, addressing as many blockages as possible. Department of Livability and Code Enforcement teams are assisting in identifying and clearing debris and litter to minimize blockages. Lake Dotterer was lowered yesterday, and Colonial Lake’s valves have been set for outflow.
  • Emergency Response and Staffing: High-water vehicles will be staffed at the fire department and have a second vehicle on standby. CPD and other city departments will be staffed up today to provide extra manpower for operations.
  • Garbage and Debris Preparation: Residents are urged to secure garbage cans until tomorrow morning at 6:00 a.m. The city is utilizing the CHS Trashtracker app to notify residents about garbage and debris cleanup efforts. Sweepers, trash, and garbage crews will be on standby to clean up any debris tomorrow.
  • Recreation: All City of Charleston’s youth summer camps will have an early release at 1:00 p.m. today.
  • Early Release for all Non-essential City Employees: Out of an abundance of caution, the City of Charleston will have a 2:00 p.m. release of non-essential staff to reduce the number of people traveling this afternoon and improve safety.

The City of Charleston will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide updates, as necessary. For the latest information and resources, residents are encouraged to visit the city’s official website and follow social media channels: FacebookInstagramX.