The remnants of Hurricane Ida came across New Jersey on September 1. Of course, it wasn’t a hurricane any more, but there were some reported tornados (didn’t get anyone I know) and extreme rain.

At my house, the rain lasted from 6 pm to midnight.  It’s hard to say how much I got as nearby stations reported anywhere from 7 to 10 inches. Interpolating, I’d say at least 8 inches. In any case, there was a lot of water in a very short time and it had no place to go. So all the streams overflowed, bridges and roads were damaged or destroyed, and cars and trains got stuck, sometimes with fatal consequences for their occupants.

My basement started to flood. Fortunately I have a pump. I retrieved hose from the backyard and set up the pump to pump from the basement floor, up the stairs, through the garage and out on the driveway. It kept up with incoming water and there was never more than a few inches in the basement. Fortunately, there’s nothing valuable, that could be damaged by water, right on the floor, arranged many years ago when the water tank sprung a leak!

On September 8, I discovered I had no water! No faucets inside or outside would produce water. My pump wasn’t working. Where I live, there is no “city water,” every house has it’s own well with a pump. I have a fairly old well, although the pump has been replaced since we moved in. I took me a while to finally get a plumber to check it out. Part of the problem was all the plumbers were busy with post-Ida repairs and another part of the problem was I was going to NYC for the century ride on September 12.  My well head is in a pit about 4 feet deep and 3 feet in diameter. There is forsythia planted all around it to hide it. I had to cut back a lot of forsythia before getting a repair crew out. I finally made contact with the plumbing company that had done the pump replacement for me (actually, he had retired, it was his son). He pointed me at a well company and they came out the same day, September 14. They had it fixed in a couple of hours. In the pit is a switch and an electrical box. It appears Ida had flooded the pit (there’s a lid, but it’s not water tight) and damaged the electrical box. Replacing the box solved the problem.

I learned my tank holds enough water to last about a week if nothing much is going on!

Since the storm, I have been riding my bike around the area pretty much as usual, except I am finding many of the smaller roads are closed because bridges have been damaged and not yet repaired. In some case, I can walk my bike over the damage and keep going. In other cases I have to turn around. I‘ve taken photos of many of these damaged bridges and included them below.

The rest of the story is in the pictures below.

Clicking on a photo below brings up a larger version. You can also activate a slide show.

Ida Aftermath, September, 2021