Fixing the Bean Brook flooding problem
To the Editor:
The Bean Brook flooding problem is not simple, beginning on the hill beyond Holyoke Street into the Blue Heron Swamp, and on into Spruce Street just before Swain Road.
The brook and swamp need to be cleaned out of fallen trees, mud and stones to provide a free flow to the Androscoggin River. The DEP and private landowners seem to have taken a dim view of that work in the past so the Rumford town crews could do nothing.
Our normal spring snow melt and rain is handled well by the swamp and the brook if the culvert is cleared. However, every few years, we have too much snow melt with heavy rain for a week and then we flood. My neighbor is inundated, water flowing around his home and into Spruce Street. I have a far less serious problem.
We had two beaver dams a few years ago, one in the Blue Heron Swamp, another across Spruce Street, in the brook area. The beavers were trapped, but the dam was not removed in the swamp because it was on private property. We also had logging on the hill that year beyond Holyoke Street that may have contributed to the problem. I do not think that was dealt with.
Add, now, CMP cutting, on the hill beyond Holyoke.
And, of course, Tropical Storm Irene, with its heavy rain in a short period of time. But the storm only highlighted a problem that has existed for some time.
How do we fix the flooding in this area?
The DEP and private landowners have to cooperate to clean out the Blue Heron swamp and Bean Brook. The clear-cutting, if that is part of the problem, as it now seriously impacts homes on Holyoke Street, must be dealt with, even if it is CMP. A bigger culvert might also be part of the answer.
As a homeowner in the flooding area, I hope everyone will work together to fix the problem.
Last, Rumford town crews have always worked to help us during the flooding. We certainly cannot complain about them.