10.30.2015

Crazy Rain Again in Austin. Two weeks in a row...

Sixth Street.

Last weekend the city of Austin (and the race track at Circuit of the Americas = F1 venue) the mysteries of nature dropped about 16 inches of rain over the course of two days. It was a thin and whipping rain that soaked everything. Zillions of smaller rain drops but delivered in awesome quantity. It generated a lot of flooding and shut down the prelims for the Grand Prix on Saturday. 

I think most Austinites presumed that this was going to be our one Fall drenching and, par for the course, the rain stopped and the sun came out as the last of our car-centered visitors left for their next engagement. We had a wonderful week of moderate temperatures and light winds. 

When I headed for bed last night there was a forecast saying we'd get some rain today but no big panic on the part of weather casters.

Sometime in the early (pre-dawn) hours the rain started falling. By eight a.m. it was falling down a lot. Big, fat, fast, juicy drops. There gutters up on the street looked like white water. The never-ending homebuilding project next door starting sloughing off unprotected topsoil by the ton and diverting it into the storm sewers, and around 9:30 a.m. water started seeping through the low lying East wall of the studio. 

I was working at the computer and I turned around to notice a slow moving sheet of water moving out into the room. I really need to get an expert out to check what's happening with the French drain that runs along the wall but I think I already know = 6.5 inches of rain in about three hours, coming in on top of the 12-16 inches that saturated the ground last week. 

The vacuum cleaner sucked up the water and I cancelled a coffee appointment. Lightning had precluded any idea of early morning swim practice. But I've been lucky,  I just had a little bit of water on the concrete floor. All over South Austin whole neighborhoods are getting evacuated and the airport was completely shut down for four or five hours this morning. I headed out to Trader Joes to get some stuff for dinner and just in my neighborhood several roads were closed. 

Today, in Austin, it's good to have some weatherproof cameras. We've got a few more bands of heavy rain to get through and then the weekend cleans up its act and we get some sunshine and clear skies.

Just in time for Halloween photos. Have fun. Stay dry.



6 comments:

Michael Matthews said...

That's the trouble with French drains: they have to lead somewhere. Mine leads to an underground dispersion chamber which, of course, fills up. Be glad you're dealing with (I think) a concrete slab. At least the hardwood flooring won't turn toes-up and buckle from wall to wall. Water. It has pursued me from house to house through four states.

Kirk Tuck said...

It is on a concrete slab so I'm not especially worried. But it's damn annoying. It only happens during torrential downpours and I always mean to fix everything before the memory fades and the sunshine wipes away the frustration, only to have the whole thing re-visit me later. I am aiming my French drains at the empty house next door. 2.5 years of construction nonsense and counting. I thought if I watered the project maybe it would sprout and we'd be done with it... :-)

Wes said...

When I heard about the rain in Austin, I was wondering how you were holding up. I see that you're weathering it well. Hopefully it doesn't hit us in the Mid-Atlantic in the same way, even though we could use a little more rain.

Gato said...

Glad to hear you're relatively dry. Couldn't get the blog earlier today and was worried you might have gone under. Sounds rough down there.

Wolfgang Lonien said...

Hmmm - water with a vacuum cleaner? Dunno, but that sounds very dangerous to me. I know you're a good swimmer, and as a photographer you also know your way around electricity and stuff, but both together could kill you...

Ron Zack said...

Do hope all is well in your part of Austin today, as I've heard things were quite bad throughout all of central Texas these past 24 hours, with very severe flooding, tornados, and hurricane force winds causing all sorts of death and destruction. The images and stories out of your area are shocking, to say the least. Be safe.