News Alert
UPDATE: Massive Brush Fire Rages In Berkeley,…

First New Interactive Flood Map Released

Map is the first in a series designed to increase the information accessible to residents and officials living in the Passaic River Basin before and during a flood event.

The first in a series of online, interactive flood-preparation maps has been released by the state Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).

The maps are designed to assist emergency management personnel and keep residents living in the Passaic River Basin better informed about flood events as they happen.

The first map covers a nearly 3-mile stretch of the Passaic River from Lodi to Saddle River. Several tabs on the map show the current and historical water levels and links to other information about the river at that a specific location.

Users can also sign up for flood alerts from the site.

The information used to collect the information for a specific gauge has been updated to provide a more accurate reading than the ones gathered from the National Weather Service’s River Forecast Center.

Bob Considine, a press officer with the DEP, said there are no immediate plans to add a map for a location on part of a river that floods in Wayne.

The project is a collaborative effort between the DEP, the U.S. Geological Survey, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“These online maps, intuitive and easy for anyone to use, provide real-time information to residents about conditions during significant rainfalls and will assist local, state, and federal officials in making critical decisions to protect the public in the event of flooding,” said DEP Commissioner in a statement.

The 1,000-square mile basin covers portions of Passaic, Morris, and Bergen Counties.

Improving flood mapping in the basin is one of the recommendations in the Passaic River Basin Advisory Commission’s 15-point plan for short- and long-term measures to help mitigate the impact of flooding in the basin. The DEP updated the plan earlier this year.

The commission recommended officials release better information to the public to help residents and officials better prepare for flood emergencies.

Gov. Chris Christie formed the commission in 2011 in response to a series of damaging floods in the basin.

Seventeen other maps highlighting critical areas of the basin will be created “in the coming months,” the DEP said in a statement. Other locations include Pompton Plains along the Pompton River, Little Falls along the Passaic River, and in Mahwah and Oakland, which are located upstream from Wayne, along the Wanaque River.

— Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Daniel Hubbard at Daniel.Hubbard@patch.com or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Nose Wayne October 02, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Steve, there is nothing wrong with the GATES. Just drain the lake a couple DAYS not a couple HOURS before a MAJOR storm dumps over a foot of rain and we won't get washed away like we did during Irene.Lowering the lake 3 feet the day before was just plain stupid on their part.Trees and houses wouldn't have been ripped from the ground like they were when they completely opened the gates up.
lovethetunes October 02, 2012 at 08:20 PM
Nose Wayne - do you feel the dam has actually benefited those living downstream or do you feel it has been a problem for those living downstream? Yes, lowering Pompton Lake would be helpful and something that was brought up years ago after the 2006/2007 flooding but remember before the dam/gates, flooding was more or a rarity in the pre-dam days. Sometimes it is better to leave things alone - natural filtration, the falls, etc. besides the dam is an eyesore. Many I know that have lived in the flood area from childhood til now are knowledgeable and have eyars of experience living in this area. They see the difference in the flooding - how and where it floods, the severity of the pressure of the flood waters. People were running into their homes to avoid the rushes of water - what a way to have to live! I know some that have to re-do their homes five times in a year - cost-effective, no, I don't think so and not for anyone involved.
lovethetunes October 02, 2012 at 08:25 PM
Nose Wayne - Thank you for your help with our petition. We appreciate our neighboring communities help and caring. We are trying to get more sampling done downstream from Pompton Lake - check out -http://www.pomptonlakescag.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/05/Resolution-006-FINAL.pdf. We have been told sewage levels are exceeded during serious flooding here in PL. We are not convinced after a hundred years of contamination that nothing has moved downstream - in fact, some contaminants can travel up to 10 miles as we have learned through this horrible toxic time in our lives. We need more detailed testing - better to be safe than sorry :(.
Steve October 02, 2012 at 09:56 PM
stewart resmer October 02, 2012 at 10:05 PM
uhm...point of order here? @ the sympsoium at WPU? The Army Coprs of engineers spokesperson distinctly said that the gate belonged to a water company and that th water is the stock and trade commodity, that they decide when the gates open or close with how much volume to pass. Seems to me they are most liable for any damage, but of course they will claim an act of GOD affirmative defense, just like if the berm collapses at Packanack I suppose? But hey, thats my opinion...
Nose Wayne October 02, 2012 at 10:27 PM
Steve, the GATES don't have to be fixed. They need to be properly operated so when there is a drought, we can hold back water. When there is a storm coming, the lake has to be drained carefully as to not flood out below and will retain the runoff rainwater we get from these storms.To much money has been spent on study after study. Common knowledge of how to control the gates is needed,not a computer or study.
YGBFKM October 02, 2012 at 10:42 PM
Just CLEAN OUT THE RIVER so water can "exist" where it originally did. The BOTTOM of some(alot) of areas is now ABOVE waterline. NO volume means river not staying within it's banks, NO flow, NO room for error(excess rain AND more from the north). It's GOT to be done-cut through the B.S. NOW!
Nose Wayne October 02, 2012 at 10:50 PM
Love, five years have gone by since they put the GATES in.In those five years, look at how many houses,streets,shopping centers(huge one is planned by the old ford plant in Mahwah) have been built. Trees that absorb water that doesn't go into our rivers have been cut down and hundreds of acres cleared.That used to absorb all that water that now goes directly into our waterways. When they built Rt 287, they cut down over 50 acres of trees and put a railroad track in to excavate hundreds of thousands of yards of dirt at the end of Ryerson Avenue in Wayne for WETLANDS LOST FOR 287 !!!! What do you think happens when that river goes up and all those trees that used to absorb all that water goes ? All I can do is shake my head and wonder what they were thinking.Just hope we get enough signatures on that petition to FINALLY clean up Acid Brook in Pompton, GOOD LUCK LOVE.
Nose Wayne October 02, 2012 at 11:03 PM
YGBFKM, Back in the 80's Gagliano Brothers DREDGED the river at no charge between Wayne and Lincoln Park for free fill. They only did a section between Two Bridges and Route 202 in Mt. View. Now if you look there all the sediment that was north of there got washed down and filled in where it was dredged. I agree that they have to start at the mouth of the Wanaque Reservoir and desnag and dredge the river all the way down so the water stays where it belongs,in the river.
Steve October 03, 2012 at 12:42 AM
Pedantic again. When I say fix the gates, I don't mean that they're broken, I mean that they are not operated correctly, and of course it entails the level of water behind them. For the love of heaven.
Nose Wayne October 03, 2012 at 12:53 AM
Steve, Don't be PEDANTIC, just tell us what you" MEAN" The gates operate from the bottom up,not from the top down, Just being PEDANTIC again.
Mr. BNH October 03, 2012 at 06:20 PM
If I purchased a home next to a volcano would I have the right to complain If my home went up in flames? could I demand the government move the mountain? Why do my tax dollars need to be spent pulling people out of a place that obviously floods when they all know it' floods and always has and always will. It's simple , dont buy a home there and if you do it's your poor judgement not my responsibility to pay for all the state or town services to clean it up and rescue people who won't leave. It's common sense really.
lovethetunes October 03, 2012 at 07:06 PM
Wow, I guess you don't understand how some either moved to flood areas unknowingly or were misinformed by the seller of the homes? Let's put it this way, while I agree buying in a flood plain knowingly is subjecting yourself to flooding problems, many I personally know bought without knowing about the severe flooding problems. In fact, back in the 60s when some homes were built in PL in flood areas, flood insurance was not required and no one told them brand-spanking new homeowners that it ever flooded in that area. Could you imagine how they felt when the flood of 68 hit???? Some buyers are also misled and told tales such as things like this home never flooded or it only floods one in a decade, etc. etc. We should care about each other in my eyes, not just ourselves.
lovethetunes October 03, 2012 at 07:08 PM
I agree Nose Wayne - it is not just the dam issue and over-development is another contributor and a big one. Thanks for your well wishes in regard to our contamination issues here in Pompton Lakes. Decades of basically no true residential clean-up and still waiting for the site to be Federalized under the Superfund program. Very frustrating to say the least :).
Sandy Fantau October 03, 2012 at 07:39 PM
I just posted a spot graph that shows the history of flooding for Pompton Lakes and my neighborhood. From the graph you can easily see that the floodgates have contributed to the increase of flooding. I'm very sorry that you feel that only certain people deserve or or worth of services during a time of need. I would hate to see your reasoning flowing over to both the fire departments and ambulance squads. They do a great job serving the whole township and put their lives at risk both during a flood and a house fire.
Sandy Fantau October 03, 2012 at 07:41 PM
Sorry, I just deleted my post here and put where it should have went. I signed your petition also.
Scondo October 03, 2012 at 08:35 PM
That is not exactly what they said. North Jersey Water Supply Commission operates the gates, operation having been turned over to them by the State and the ACOE. Wanaque South Pumping station has pumping level requirements that by agreement must be observed.
Scondo October 03, 2012 at 08:38 PM
You are correct in one regard, it is irresponsible to buy or build in the flood plain and not expect to get flooded. But time and time again it has happened, why should tax dollars be used to buy out---to stop the bleed that is the NFIP which is tax dollars paying for the same damage over and over again. Stop the misery but out.
Scondo October 03, 2012 at 08:43 PM
There is a doctrine called Cavaet Emptor--still somewhat viable in the area of real estate. It means that the buyer should satisfy himself through his due dilligence that they are completely satisfied with their purchase. Anyone can have a flood search done.
Scondo October 03, 2012 at 08:54 PM
News Flash ---There is nothing wrong with the gates , nor with the operation of same. Unprecedented weather patterns for 2011 resulted in the flooding that was akin to the 1903 flood. There was an independent study that showed that there was nothing wrong with the gates and only the tin foil hat crowd continues to hold onto the idea that the gates contributed to the flooding.
Nose Wayne October 04, 2012 at 03:19 AM
That was lovely put love. Have spoken to many people during Irene that just moved here and they told me either the realtor or homeowner told them it never floods here. Mr BNH,like I said above, we should not send fire and rescue people in to help these people out of their houses because they should have NOSED it was going to flood ? Next time it floods, why don't you go down to the flood area and tell those people what you just stated on here. Like love said, we should care about each other. Neighbor helping neighbor. You should try it some time ? Remember your last line in your post "IT'S COMMON CENTS REALLY, CAUSE THAT WHAT IT COSTS. Oh Love, you names are on the way, GOOD LUCK !!!!!
lovethetunes October 04, 2012 at 03:52 AM
Thank you Sandy!!
lovethetunes October 04, 2012 at 03:53 AM
Thanks again Nose Wayne!
lovethetunes October 04, 2012 at 04:19 AM
Nose Wayne - funny but after the 2006/2007 flood I brought up in PL that the gates should be manned (not by a computer) by a human being when it was known that serious weather conditions were on their way. Never happened that I know of. I also brought up lowering the lake and when it happened this time around - it was done too late. Lowering it gradually with ample notice of bad weather coming would work much better.
Scondo October 04, 2012 at 11:31 AM
Nose, those people who said they were told by a realtor that it never floods shouldcsuevthecrealtor, but I guarantee you that their title work had the 15 dollar flood search . Yup it cost 15 dollars for a flood search. 15 dollars when you are spending hundreds of thousands of dollars. Oh, if you ask the realtors they would tell you flat out that they have no knowledge of a particular flood history
Nose Wayne October 04, 2012 at 02:37 PM
Anytime Love. Scondo, we have had historical flooding that we have never seen before.1968,1984 and 2011 will go down in the Wayne history books as the worst flooding ever to hit this Township. 68 the Pompton Plains Crossroads bridge was washed out. 1984 we lost a volunteer fireman returning from Hoffman Grove and drown and two elderly women on Dorsa Avenue to the flood. 2011,was over 2 1/2 feet higher than 1984, two houses blew up,one each in Wayne and Pompton, numerous houses washed off their foundations and people that NEVER had water in their life were flooded..So people that moved in up to 2011, the realtors were telling the people the truth.It never floods here, up until Irene came and paid us all a costly visit.
Sandy Fantau October 04, 2012 at 03:07 PM
Let's compare the flood of 1903 with hurricane Irene, Scando. 1. The timber dam at Pompton Lakes broke, which caused the sudden emptying of the lake. A. The Pompton Lakes Dam/Floodgates opened between 14 feet and 18 feet during hurricane Irene. Creating a man made dam break. (The Pompton Floodgates are unique in the fact they are designed to protect properties up stream of the dam from flooding. Most dams are built to protect down stream flooding.) 2. The dam at Cranberry Pond in Arden, failed in the early part of the storm. A. The Echo Lake Dam in Arden failed causing further flooding in the Ramapo River. (Are they the same dam? Just a name change.) 3. The dam at Nigger Pond which lies at the head of a small tributary broke and emptied into the Ramapo River below Tuxedo, NY. How are they the same? Both storms had dam breaks. The Pompton Lakes Dam/Floodgates in all intense and purposes is creating a man made dam break, that sends water out faster then the lower rivers can handle. A. This causes the water to rush so fast that the erosion along the Ramapo in Oakland is unbelievable. (Oakland is now applying for DEP permits to line the shores of the Ramapo River with rock to help control the erosion. I believe it will also make the water move faster down stream, because the water will no longer be absorbed into the surrounding ground.)
Sandy Fantau October 04, 2012 at 03:23 PM
The water that use to be held back during a flood event has to go some where. That some where is down stream from the dam. I thing I know is that you can not fit a 20 oz of water into a 10 oz container. Some of that water will spill over into the low lying areas. The Pompton Lakes Dam/Floodgates where a part of a much bigger project to include the Flood Tunnel. Only with both being done did this project have any hope of helping flooding in the Lower Passaic River Basin. This to me is like changing the building codes where having steps from the second floor to the first is no longer required, but highly recommend. The Army Corp should have know what the Floodgates would do without the whole project being done. If they never did a study on the effect of the floodgates with out the tunnel shame on them. As George Carlin said Don't just teach your children to read.... Teach them to question what they read. Teach them to question Everything.
Nose Wayne October 04, 2012 at 08:56 PM
Sandy Fantau October 05, 2012 at 04:12 PM
Scando, you talk about buyouts as the only answer to this problem. You maybe right. Let's look at this option from another perspective. I believe there are between 250 and 350 homes that would need to be bought out above the dam in Wayne, Pompton Lakes, and Oakland. I'm not sure how many homes and business are effected in the towns below the dam. When you consider going from Pompton Lakes all the way to Paterson. Wouldn't you think it would be fiscally more responsible to buyout the homes above the dam and make that area a large retention basin, that would be able to hold the water and release at a much slower pace monitoring the river levels below with this new system. With the technology being installed I believe we have the ability to now do this.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something