Stephen B. Morton / AP

Savannah is trying a new way to keep storm drains from clogging: having volunteers "adopt a drain."


The city is famous for its tree-lined streets.


But all the trees and Spanish moss also make for a lot of debris, which can clog stormwater drains and damage water quality.


So, the volunteer Savannah Trash Warriors and the civic technology group Open Savannah pitched an idea: let residents adopt their local drain and keep it clear.

Paying for Crumbling Stormwater Systems

Feb 23, 2016
Grant Blankenship / Georgia Public Broadcasting


Clay Murphey, a project manager for Macon Bibb County, walked through an eight-foot-high stormwater culvert under a busy intersection. As sloshed through three inches of water, Murphey ran a hand along a jagged crack in the dusty red brick.

"This is the stuff we're concerned about. These large cracks," Murphey said. “You got seepage that's coming from above. That shouldn't be happening. Everytime you're seeping, you are washing away the mortar that's holding this brick in place.”

Then Murphey pointed down to brick rubble lying in the water.