by Tim Regan October 2, 2015 at 10:25 am 0

sandbags, photo via Water is currently distributing sandbags to residents who live in LeDroit Park and Bloomingdale ahead of possible flooding, the city agency announced today in a press release.

DC Water personnel are currently distributing the sandbags at First Street and Rhode Island Avenue NW.

Only customers who live in the flood-prone neighborhoods of Bloomingdale, LeDroit Park and on the 900 block of P Street NW can receive a sandbag. Further, people who live in those neighborhoods may be asked to show proof of residency when picking up sandbags. Though proof of residency includes a driver’s license, anything with an address on it would suffice, said John Lisle, DC Water’s chief of external affairs.

The press release continues:

“As with any weather emergency, our crews will brave the elements to ensure that we continue to deliver our essential service,” said DC Water CEO and General Manager George S. Hawkins. “While we cannot control Mother Nature, we will do our best to keep our customers informed and respond to emergencies.”

The District’s drinking water treatment facilities — operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Washington Aqueduct — and the Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant are built to withstand the impact of a severe storm. Loss of electricity at an individual home or multi-unit building does not have an impact on the delivery of drinking water. If any service disruptions should occur, customers will be notified immediately through DC Water’s Alert System, local news media and social media platforms, including Twitter (@dcwater), Facebook ( and Instagram (@myDCWater).

DC Water Emergency Preparedness Tips:
–       Sign up for text or email alerts at
–       Report clogged storm drains by calling the 24/7 Command Center at (202) 612-3400.
–       Check gutters and downspouts to make sure they are clear of debris.
–       Prepare an emergency supply kit that includes a 3-day supply of food and water.
–       For more information on preparing for a hurricane, please visit

Cropped photo via

by Tim Regan October 1, 2015 at 12:10 pm 0

rainy weather in Borderstan, photo via of whether Hurricane Joaquin visits D.C., the city is bracing for heavy rain and flooding this weekend.

Mayor Muriel Bowser’s office said today in a press release that the mayor has been briefed by the District’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (HSEMA) and city leaders on the forecast for Hurricane Joaquin and the District’s readiness. According to the the release, HSEMA will hold “twice daily briefings” with National Weather Service and agency officials on storm preparation.

The National Weather Service said yesterday that D.C. and the surrounding area could see anywhere from two to five inches of rain between tomorrow and Monday morning.

How can you prepare for the wet weather? Bowser tweeted earlier today that D.C. residents should “take a few mins to clear debris from any storm drains” to avoid basement flooding like the kind seen in Shaw in June.

Likewise, DC Water has urged its customers to prepare for flooding by reporting clogged catch basins near their homes.

While most experts say there’s no need to panic just yet — I’m looking at you, Virginia — the National Weather Service has issued a flash flood watch for D.C. and the surrounding region until Saturday evening.

In other words, if you live in a flood-prone part of town, prepare for leaky basements. But maybe wait a while before going nuts on the toilet paper, bread and milk.

Photo via Flickr/ vlsergey

by Tim Regan July 27, 2015 at 4:20 pm 0


(Updated at 7:11 p.m.) It looks like the worst of the weather is behind us.

Still, the Borderstan coverage area may see a few spotty storms as we head into the evening hours.

Earlier this afternoon, the National Weather Service issued severe thunderstorm and a flash flood warning amid a storm that dumped about an inch of rain on the D.C. area.

Though the storms gave way to sunny skies, the NWS says there’s still a chance some storms could roll our way before 1 a.m.

by Tim Regan June 18, 2015 at 11:20 am 0

Fairmont, photo via Google Maps

A water main being repaired has closed the stretch of Fairmont Street between Georgia and Sherman avenues NW for up to 8 to 10 hours, says D.C. Water.

Motorists are being advised to avoid the street.

From D.C. Police:

DC WATER reports water main repairs at 752 Fairmont St between Georgia Ave and Sherman Ave NW are closed for up to 8 to 10 hours. Please avoid the area. MPD, FEMS, OUC, and DDOT have been notified.

Photo via Google Street View

by September 19, 2012 at 8:00 am 2,080 0


Floridian at Vermont Avenue (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Rachel Nania. Check out her blog, Sear, Simmer & Stir. Follow Nania on Twitter @rnania, email her at rachel[AT]

With yesterday afternoon’s severe weather and heavy rains, many Borderstan residents and business owners were preparing for potential flooding. Previous problems have been in the U Street NW corridor and Florida Avenue NW area.

This summer’s notorious thunderstorms and derechos have impacted several DC neighborhoods, most notably, Bloomingdale (an area of Northwest DC that borders Florida Avenue, Rhode Island Avenue and Howard University). In early September, NBC Washington reported flooded basements, submerged cars and even the rescue of a man trapped in his car due to rising water on Rhode Island Avenue NW.

The flooding incidents in Bloomingdale eventually sparked local political action. Ward 5 Councilmember Kenyan McDuffie requested a relief fund for victims, while Mayor Vincent Gray established a task force to find a solution for the flooding in the neighborhood.

But this summer’s floods were not just limited to Bloomingdale; residents in the Borderstan area experienced similar damage.

According to one local resident who lives in the Rhapsody (at Vermont and Florida Avenues NW), the ground floor of his building flooded twice this summer, most recently over Labor Day weekend. A second resident in the same building confirmed damage from Labor Day weekend’s storm in the ground level, the parking level and the entrance and lobby.

The damage caused by the floods to the Rhapsody building required  water extraction and cleanup. Additionally, the carpets and the floors on the ground level need to be replaced (something the building is still in the process of doing). Two other buildings in the area, including the Floridian and the Beauregard (at 11th and V Streets NW) also had flooding problems this summer.

In response to a phone call yesterday, Ward 1 Councilmember Jim Graham says he is doing various things in response to the area’s floods, including an engineering inspection at the Rhapsody after the last storm.

“Just today I’ve been on the phone with the General Manager of DC Water, and he has agreed to sandbag both buildings [the Rhapsody and the Floridian],” confirmed Graham. “We’re trying to take immediate action, but we’ve also got to have the results of these engineering studies so that we know where to go from there.”

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by March 21, 2012 at 9:30 am 1,792 1 Comment

By Michelle Lancaster. You can follow her and let her know your news on Twitter @MichLancaster. Email her at michellel[AT]

DC, Water, ep_jhu

Your DC tap water may smell a bit like a swimming pool for the next  six weeks. (Photo by ep_jhu in Borderstan flickr pool)

For years, the John Birch Society warned people about the ‘communist plot’ led by the government to put fluoride in drinking water. Well, we’re here to tell you that if your water smells a tiny bit like a swimming pool, it’s totally cool.

We promise.

Just as your house needs sprucing up in this time of spring cleaning, so do DC’s water pipes. According to DC Water, that means chlorine instead of chloramine for a system-flushing and cleaning process starting March 26 and ending around May 7. This is a routine cleaning for DC and water systems around the country, and there is a monitoring system in place to track amounts of chlorine in drinking water.

If you’re still freaking out, the press release from DC Water provides a few ways to reduce the odor or amount all together in drinking water. For example, DC Water recommends running the cold water tap for approximately two minutes and refrigerating cold tap water for a few hours to reduce taste and odor. Water filters are also effective in reducing chlorine taste and odor.

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by January 17, 2012 at 7:36 am 1,584 0


Borderstan: News from Dupont-Logan-U Street

From DC Water around 2 am on Tuesday, January 17:

“DC Water crews/contractors are currently repairing a broken 12 inch water main located on U St between 13th and 14th St NW. Some customers in the area may experience a disruption in water service until repairs are complete. Traffic is not impacted by the repair work.”

And this update around 5 am via DC Alert:

“Update: DC Water reports that the water main break on U St. between 13th and 14th streets NW, is affecting 14 commercial buildings, not 31. Restoration time remains 6 to 8 hours.”

More information: Contact DC Water at 202-612-3400 or [email protected].

by January 26, 2011 at 6:25 am 1,686 0

DC Condo Guy 14th Street NW Luis Gomez Photos

Saturday at 14th and Rhode Island NW. (Luis Gomez Photos)

From Michelle Lancaster. Got news for Michelle? Send her an email.

We hope you didn’t miss the State of the Union speech last night. For those that watched, we hope you played this game and are reading this while ‘recovering’ at work.

Oh, and They’re Calling For Snow

Time for the inevitable bread, milk and TP runs — apparently this storm is actually going to give us some snow! Let’s try to avoid this type of thing again, readers.


by August 9, 2010 at 7:27 pm 1,390 0

Luis Gomez Photos DC Water Corcoran Street NW

15th and Corcoran NW: Work on a water main on Monday meant no water for area residents. (Luis Gomez Photos)

DC Water is still working on the “small diameter priority water mains” project on Corcoran Street NW. An area around 15th and Corcoran Streets NW was without water Monday from around 9 am to 4 pm. A crew opened a large trench at the intersection early this morning, but had temporarily paved it over by evening.

Parts of the 1300 and 1400 blocks of Corcoran have been dug up for the project. It’s a familiar exercise for residents as these blocks were among the ones that got a major refurbishing in the fall of 2009–streets, tree boxes and brick sidewalks.

For more information, see the July 21 post, “Deja Vu: Corcoran Street Torn Up – Again – for Water Project.”


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