ROCKINGHAM — In the past two major hurricanes, Falling Creek has overflowed its banks onto the water plant site on Rockingham Road and city leaders are trying to prevent it from happening again.
Rockingham Water Department workers on Wednesday had a demonstration on setting up and breaking down the new Tiger Dam system from a representative of US Flood Control.
According to the company’s website, its dams are cheaper than sandbags and each damn is equivalent to about 500 sandbags.
The city recently purchased 700 feet of dam tubes to go between the creek and the plant to protect the clear wells, according to Assistant City Manager John Massey.
The bright orange tubes are stacked with two on the bottom and one on top and held together with straps, reaching a height of about 5 feet, 6 inches.
Massey said the spillover from the creek has never reached that high.
Water Department officials said there was about three feet of water at the site following both Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Florence in 2018.
It takes about 15 minutes to fill each tube with about 4,300 gallons of water, resulting in the tubes weighing nearly 18 tons each.
The department will be working on a plan to set up the dam system quickly in case it’s needed.