HAVERHILL — The city is asking the public to help clear fallen leaves out of storm drains in anticipation of Hurricane Sandy, which is expected to cause flooding throughout the region. Rain is expected to start this evening, with heavier rainfall expected tomorrow and continuing into Tuesday.
Mayor James Fiorentini said there are more than 5,000 storm drains/catch basins in Haverhill, and although the Highway Department has been sending out crews on a regular basis, leaves have been dropping so quickly that it will be impossible for city workers to clear all the drains by tonight.
“There is a high possibility of Hurricane Sandy hitting the east coast with heavy rains and high winds,” Fiorentini said.
The city is asking that residents to check storm drains in front of their property and along their roads, rake leaves away from t and not into the drains, and to dispose of the leaves and debris in yard waste bins or brown paper leaf bags. Residents are asked not remove storm grates. The DPW is reminding residents that street sweepers cannot pick up large piles of leaves. Residents are never to rake or blow leaves from their property into the street.
“Your cooperation is greatly appreciated in preparing for Hurricane Sandy,” the mayor said.
The city will hold its annual cubrside leaf collection on Saturday, Dec.1.
Leaves must be curbside by 6 a.m.and be in open containers or biodegradable paper bags. The city will not collect brush, grass clippings or plastic bags.