February 2, 2017

SFWMD Clearing Effort Helps Ensure the Safety
of South Miami-Dade County Families
Pre-emptive flood protection measures along the C-100A Canal
will protect lives and property

Fallen trees blocking canals after Hurricane Andrew contributed to flooding in Miami-Dade County in 1992. Click on images to see larger versions of the pictures.
PINECREST, FL - This week, South Florida Water Management (SFWMD) teams began work to clear overgrown vegetation interfering with flood control operations along a 7-mile stretch of the C-100A Canal in the Village of Pinecrest and Village of Palmetto Bay. Since October 2016, SFWMD staff has been meeting with residents to discuss the implementation of this flood protection measure, as part of a maintenance program designed to protect homes from the aftermath of heavy storms and hurricanes.
"Approximately 100,000 residents rely on this canal for flood protection," said SFWMD Governing Board Member Federico Fernandez. "The C-100A Canal has been a crucial part of the region's flood control system for more than 50 years. District teams will work diligently to clear canal banks of any debris or vegetation that can fall into the water during a weather event and compromise the system."

Trees or branches that fall into canals can prevent water from draining away from properties, putting homes and families at risk of flooding. In 1992 after Hurricane Andrew, tree limbs blocked numerous canals in Miami-Dade County and contributed to widespread flooding. In 2005 after Hurricane Wilma, taxpayers were burdened with a $600,000 bill to clear debris from this same 7-mile stretch of C-100A to restore its flood protection capacity. 

SFWMD owns easements along canal banks for preventative maintenance purposes. Teams will be clearing specially identified obstructions located up to 20 feet from the C-100A that pose the greatest risk. However, staff are working with individual property owners to further evaluate and potentially limit the removal of trees. This open dialogue between staff and affected property owners, to mitigate the level of removal, started in October when SFWMD representatives personally visited homeowners to notify them of upcoming work. Furthermore, there is a web page dedicated to updating homeowners with the latest information:

It is this extra effort that hasn't gone unnoticed by residents. A Palmetto Bay homeowner wrote the District a letter thanking its efforts to advise residents of the work and protect them from flooding.

"When the tree falls down in the canal in a hurricane, not only does it block the water, but also it takes a big chunk of canal bank with it," wrote homeowner Antao Chen. "I support SFWMD to clear the bank of big trees."

Media Contact: 
Randy Smith  |   rrsmith@sfwmd.gov    |  Office: 561-682-2800  |  Cell: 561-389-3386
The South Florida Water Management District is a regional governmental agency that manages the water resources in the southern part of the state. It is the oldest and largest of the state's five water management districts. Our mission is to protect South Florida's water resources by balancing and improving flood control, water supply, water quality and natural systems.


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