Fluctuating Temps Cause Flooding in Sussex County - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Fluctuating Temps Cause Flooding in Sussex County

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 LEWES, Del. - After Tuesday night's rainstorm and the past few snow events, flooding can be a problem in flat areas.

Chris Mussel lives in Lewes, and showed us how flooded his front yard has gotten this winter.

"I've noticed it here in this yard, it bothers me when I pull into the driveway," he said. "It's a sight, you don't want to look at it, just ready for the weather to break."

But he doesn't live near any bodies of water, what you might expect to cause the flooding. As it turns out, snow events do not cause tidal flooding at all.

According to officials with the Delaware Department of Natural Resources, these massive puddles form because the ground is frozen. Even when warmer weather comes and rain like Tuesday night occurs or the snow melts, the ground remains frozen, leaving no where for the water to soak in.

While it happens to be aesthetically unpleasing, the land flooding can also cause street drainage issues, which is something that comes to DelDOT's attention.

"The snow and the ice blocks the catch basins, the drainage inlets and then you get ponding on the roads," Alastair Probert, a DELDOT maintenance engineer said. "If there's nowhere for the water to go and the temperature drops and it refreezes then it creates slippery conditions for motorists in the morning or at night."

As we head into March, the cycle will probably continue if we keep going from very cold temperatures to warmer weather like we saw Wednesday.

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