Rain, Then Mud, Mud, and More Mud

Photo by Emily Beckner Guilliams

We’ve had a rainy week, as we sometimes do. Not a 100-year rain, not a 50-year rain, not even a 25-year rain. Just a normal rainy week, with normal thunderstorms. And, not surprisingly, when pipeline companies try do work on steep terrain, the slopes slide.

On May 18, 2018, Cahas Mountain Rd in Franklin County was covered in sediment after tree clearing by Mountain Valley Pipeline crews. Locals on the scene say the mud was 12″ to 18″ thick. The road was closed. The nearby creek was running red. The mud blocked traffic, rerouted school-buses and put the lives, land and water of Franklin County citizens at risk. Sediment-laden runoff filled local creeks to the point where cattle would not drink from them. With so much silt washing into watercourses, it seems likely that some will end up in people’s homes, causing extensive damage to the local sewage systems. Homes that flood as a result of blocked drains will therefore need a plumber similar to this Blacktown plumbing company to flush out their drains and repair any damage to pipes. Professional plumbers can also restore clean drinking water to homes that have been contaminated by run-off, but environmental experts and concerned citizens have – since 2014 – been telling FERC, the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, and the Governor of Virginia that this kind of destruction will be the result of both Mountain Valley and Atlantic Coast Pipeline construction on our steep mountain slopes.

Heavy rain can also cause damage to a building structure, especially the foundation, since the soil surrounding the house can get washed away. It could be very risky to ignore structural issues that are not always visible because it can cause the land to sink and might lead to irreparable damage. You can contact a slab foundation repair service near your location to get the foundation checked and repaired, if necessary. There’s not a lot one could do when there is heavy rain that turns into flooding. As there is a lot of damage to be expected, it is wise to prepare for it in any way you can. One can only hope that the rain won’t be too devastating next time, and the damage it might cause could be avoided by using waterproof paint when repainting the house. You could hire the services of companies like My House Painter or other similar companies.

In fact, not only buildings but other assets such as your car may also get damaged as a result of heavy rains or landslides. That being the case, car insurance might be able to protect you from vehicle repair and replacement costs due to such calamities. Needless to say, purchasing a car insurance policy entails fully utilizing its benefits in times of need. The best way to ensure that you get the most out of your investment is to choose insurance only after researching the add-ons and other benefits it may provide. If interested, you can check out the the list of all the factors that you might need to consider about car insurance reddit before shortlisting and selecting the ones that could pique your interest enough for you to buy them.

These are just a few of the precautionary measures you can take to protect your assets before a natural disaster strikes.

Anyway, it is particularly distressing that MVP said, “Initial reviews indicate the controls were installed properly; however, the circumstances appear unusual and an ultimate cause is under investigation.” MVP seems to imply that an ordinary rainy week with ordinary thunderstorms constitutes “unusual circumstances.”

If you live near the MVP or ACP path please document, date, gps coordinate, and time stamp photos to send to DEQ. Please report flood damage (time-stamp and date your photos if possible!) to the Mountain Valley Watch (833-689-2824) or to Allegheny-Blue Ridge Alliance’s Pipeline Compliance Surveillance Initiative (csi@abralliance.org, 877-GO2ABRA (877-462-2272)). You may also notify:

    • Ralph Northam, Governor (804-786-2211)
    • John McCutcheon, DEQ Stormwater Compliance Manager (804-527-5117)
    • Ann Regn, DEQ spokeswoman (804-698-4442)
    • Jerome A. Brooks, Manager of the DEQ Office of Water Compliance (804-698-4403)
    • Matt Strickler, Secretary of Natural Resources (804-786-0044)
    • We also suggest you contact your local government officials and insist that they report this to the officials responsible (such as the DEQ, VDOT, etc) for monitoring and compliance.

And here in Nelson County, Richard Averitt made this quick video to show the effects of the rain in Nelson County. We are facing an unprecedented risk to our communities. Please help. Look at the sediment problems from this one normal spring rain along the mountain valley pipeline route and imagine that same thing here in our communities and hundreds of communities throughout our state.