PS Flood Barriers Case Study: Ocean County Utilities Authority

Ocean County, New Jersey

Flood Plank

In 2012, Hurricane Sandy devastated the East Coast. Part of that destruction was flooding at wastewater pump stations located in Ocean County, New Jersey. “During Hurricane Sandy, all of our wet wells, which are about 15-20 feet below grade, got flooded,” says Richard Inglis, project engineer for Ocean County Utilities Authority (OCUA). (Wet wells are a common name for underground pits where sewage is stored).

As FEMA stepped in to help mitigate the impact of Sandy’s destruction, one of the stipulations for OCUA to receive FEMA assistance was the installation of flood protection barriers. OCUA looked into several companies to do the job and was most impressed with the experience of PS Flood Barriers and the simplicity and quality of the company’s flood planks.

“Neither we nor the contractor had ever dealt with flood barriers before, and we thought, ‘who knows more about flooding than those in North Dakota who have to deal with it year after year?’” says Inglis. “We sat down with Terry Smith from PS Flood Barriers. We looked into the company philosophy and the quality of their flood planks. We were especially impressed with the welding, and once we saw how simple they were, with no moving parts, we knew we had found a good fit.”

OCUA purchased PS Flood Barriers flood planks to be used at more than 80 openings at 15-20 wastewater pump station sites located throughout a 146-mile area between Beach Haven and Bayville, New Jersey. Should an emergency occur, the planks will prevent floodwaters from entering the pump stations and submerging the pumps, keeping the stations online.

A job this massive was bound to experience a few bumps along the way, but the project went surprisingly well for everyone involved. “When you do 80 doorways, you expect something to go wrong, but it didn’t,” says Inglis. “Overall, the project went smoothly, especially considering this was all new to us. Everyone at PS Flood Barriers was accommodating and helpful.”

OCUA and PS Flood Barriers wrapped up the project in early 2017, and if another event like Hurricane Sandy happens, Inglis says they’re ready. “We’ve got the planks, we’ve got the training, we’re ready. We’re not hoping to use them tomorrow, but we’re ready for what comes next.”

Contact Terry Smith at 877-446-1519 to learn more about PS Flood Barriers products.