News Flash


Posted on: August 22, 2023

Recent Flooding In Amesbury

2023 Summer Flooding - Picture of rain splashing on the ground

This Summer has brought unprecedented amounts of rain to Massachusetts. Amesbury and surrounding communities are experiencing impacts to our public infrastructure as a result of flash floods. Public Works has been diligently addressing storm damage as soon as possible as well as implementing mitigation measures in anticipation of more rain. Mayor Gove joined other municipal leaders in a plea for MEMA/FEMA relief funding after the August 8th storm. The meeting with the Lt. Governor outlined county and statewide thresholds for qualified reimbursable expenses related to any one event. Those thresholds are high, the process is lengthy, and the rain keeps coming. Our regional MEMA agent has done a site walk of damage for assessment and documentation with the Mayor, Public Works, Emergency Management, and the District City Councilor for those most impacted. Although relief funding for damage may be unlikely, prevention and mitigation measures are priority and are underway in our community. Our drainage system is simply not built to handle this level of rain.

If you have incurred damages to your home as a result of recent flooding, you should immediately file a claim with your business or homeowners’ insurance. Do not wait.

During a Storm/Flood

  • Put safety first. Do not attempt to drive through standing water.
  • If there is a risk to life or there’s a medical emergency, call 911.
  • If there is flooding in your basement, there could be the risk of electrical shock. Do not attempt to walk in water where it may be in contact with electrical equipment. If possible, shut off the circuit breaker or call a licensed electrician to shut the power off. 

After a Storm/Flood

  • Document the damage with photos including the cleanup process.
  • Remove water and thoroughly clean areas affected. Drying it out quickly will help prevent further damage and make the cleanup process much easier.
  • If possible, use dehumidifiers and HEPA air purifiers to help filter out mold spores and allergens.
  • Make a call or file a claim with your business or homeowners’ insurance company. Do not wait.
  • Check your basement every day for signs of mold. If mold is discovered, it is not advisable to be disturbed or handled.  There are contractors that are trained in cleaning, sanitizing, and deodorizing from this type of damage. If needed, give them a call.

2023 Flood Resources for Residents & Businesses


What the City is Working On:

  • We are prioritizing the clearing of all catch basins. Once funding was in place July 1st this went out to bid and the contract will be awarded shortly.
  • Missing or damaged berms that help direct storm water to drains are being assessed and prioritized.
  • 4th Street neighborhood – this area is prone to flooding. Funding is in place to make drainage improvements this fall. A site condition assessment has been completed and before winter stone lined swales will be installed along with cautionary subdrains to collect groundwater.


What You Can Do:


Private catch basins

Our DPW Director, Joe Buckley, is currently prioritizing the cleaning of public catch basins in Amesbury. With the recent heavy rains, localized flooding has become an issue and is being addressed. However, many catch basins are on private property and effect drainage.

Keeping storm drains clear is of paramount importance for the overall well-being of communities and the environment. Storm drains play a critical role in managing excess rainwater and preventing flooding during heavy rainfall or storms. When these drains become clogged with debris, leaves, litter, and other pollutants, they can quickly become overwhelmed, leading to localized flooding that can damage property, disrupt transportation, and pose serious safety risks. 

By maintaining clear storm drains, communities can effectively mitigate the risks associated with urban flooding, safeguarding homes, businesses, and public infrastructure.

Please do your part by making sure that storm drains on private property are clear of debris and leaves.


Public Catch Basins

Flooding on public property can be reported to Public Works by calling 978-388-8116 during normal business hours (Monday-Friday, 7:00am to 3:00pm.) During non-business hours, please call the non-emergency number at 978-388-1212.  

 Public storm drain blockage and non-life-threatening flooding can be reported using SeeClickFix.



  • Make sure to keep your drains and gutters clean so that water can flow freely. It is a good idea to have them cleaned regularly.
  • Make sure downspouts for gutters direct water away from your foundation.


Sump pumps

If your basement regularly floods, consider having a sump pump installed. A sump pump is a battery-operated or AC-powered pump that sits in a basin at the lowest point of your basement and pumps water out of the house. It will help you protect your home from future floods. 




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