Tremonton residents, city officials prepare for upcoming spring flooding

Mar 11, 2023, 5:10 PM | Updated: Apr 17, 2023, 4:18 pm

TREMONTON, Utah — It’s not that Carson Potter and his father like working on Saturdays, but they figure a little work now might save them even more work later.

“Better safe than sorry,” expressed Carson Potter.

He and his father were busy filling sandbags outside of Tremonton City Hall. They know all that when snow in the mountains and the runoff it starts to melt, it has to go somewhere. They’re worried it could get into Carson’s house.

“I went and bought a backup sump pump just in case our other one fails,” Potter said.

There is a history of flooding in Tremonton, with as much snow as the city has received this winter and a lot more still in the mountains.

What makes potential flooding in Utah this weekend different from normal runoff?

Tremonton Mayor Lyle Holmgren says it’s a concern again this year.

“We’ve spent pretty much from August until now clearing drains and making sure they were open and flowing the way they should,” Holmgren explained.

Even though you can’t see it from above, below the ground, trees and roots have blocked many of the city’s storm drains. City crews just finished clearing many of the gutters. There are also more detention ponds in town where floodwater can be directed away from homes.

“We’re all doing our best to make sure everything is flowing the way it should,” Holmgren said

One of the new drains installed in a city park. (KSLTV/Mark Less)

City leaders say a lot has changed since the massive flooding in 2017. Several homes were flooded because the infrastructure couldn’t handle all the water. Back then, a fire truck was needed to help pump water out.

“We were 24-to-36 hours straight with our truck hooked up and pumping water,” recalled David Herron, a firefighter with Tremonton’s Fire Department.

The city has installed more significant drains since then to handle more water.

“Well, if you don’t learn from your past, you’re going to fail again in the future,” Herron said.

Everyone agrees we need the water, but it has been quite the winter for work.

“It was fun for a while,” said Potter with a laugh. “All the shoveling every day.”

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Tremonton residents, city officials prepare for upcoming spring flooding