Odessa Homeowners Want Relief From Street Flooding

By Victor Lopez
NewsWest 9

ODESSA--Some Odessans say they're tired of getting splashed inside their own homes every time the streets flood after a rain.   What these homeowners say they need is a new drainage system.   The city says, what they've got, is what they're going to get.

The average rainfall in Odessa is 14 inches per year.   Put that in the middle of a residential street, add a large pick-up, going faster than it should be, and you've got yourself a big, wet mess.   But according to the City of Odessa, there's nothing they can do about it.

"Water just splashes like it was a tidal wave.  Sooner or later, we're not going to have anything here, because of that."

Gloria Hinojos is one of many that live along Hancock Street that are tired of the flooding they say is literally destroying their properties.   Some have gone so far as to take matters into their own hands.  "Monday I had to call the police to come block that road. So the city came and blocked it, but a lot of people ignored it," Hinojos added.

The problem comes when vehicles, especially large trucks, drive down the street, causing waves of water that get into everything from their homes and yards and even their cars.   This causes yet another problem, paying for the damages.  Something Aurora Gaitan knows first hand, "They wouldn't cover this area, because it was a flood zone, that was my problem they said, and I didn't get any insurance for my house, for the floods."

Carlos Gaona tells NewsWest 9, he wouldn't mind helping pay for a little bit of relief, "I don't mind pitching in or whatever.  Making another drain you know, kind of close or it don't matter so all the water can run easier you know, faster."

According to Andrea Goodson, with the City of Odessa, the City's streets are designed to be the city's drainage system and a new one isn't in the City's best interest, "We probably never will have a multi million dollar drainage system in place, because it's not a good use of tax payer dollars for just an average of 14 inches of rain."

Unfortunately, these distressed victims will have to continue to cope with the problem and hope that drivers will avoid thier flooded streets, or if not, at least drive slower when they go down the street.

Andrea Goodson says city crews go out regulary, especially on days after a storm, to make sure inlets and drains are clear of debris, which could cause even more problems should another rain come.