WHAT'S GOING ON? ... with those storm grates?

PAT FRIDGEN

The Echo Pilot received an email in late May from a resident. “During my evening walk on Leitersburg Street I noticed the storm drains have been covered with a small grate and debris has collected on them, blocking the water from entering the drain. Seems strange to me. Did my tax dollars pay for this? Is there an investigative story here?”

No and sort of.

Upon checking with the borough, the newspaper was directed to residents along Leitersburg Street. A couple of them paid for the new screens to cover eight inlet grates for several weeks when hatchling ducks are out and about. The purpose was to save their lives.

The street has a history of mothers and their ducklings wandering about, checking out the territory beyond their Tayamentasachta home.

From mid-April into early June, sometimes those duckies would fall through the borough’s storm sewer grates as they fled passing traffic and feral cats. Once below, unless borough street crews or neighbors rescued them, they would wash away in the next heavy rain or be eaten by cats who prowled the sewer system.

The residents clean the screens, and said the debris they catch therefore does not enter the storm sewer.