Relief is coming to a west Boca Raton neighborhood hampered by flood waters during this week’s heavy rains.
The Boca Chase Property Owners Association said it received permission from the Lake Worth Drainage District to open a gate allowing storm water to drain into the LWDD system for five hours Thursday. That move, coupled with a rain-free day, helped bring down water levels on Boca Chase Drive.
“It’s almost impossible. In fact, we didn’t know if we could get through this area today, we’re just taking the chance,” Peter Lemongello said after successfully driving his SUV through the flood-covered portion of Boca Chase Drive Thursday.
Beginning Tuesday night, several drivers got their car stuck in the high water and saturated ground along the road which provides the only way in and out of a handful of communities west of State Road 7 near Boca Raton.
The Palm Beach County engineer said private communities along Boca Chase Drive are responsible for maintaining drainage of the county-owned road. The county previously said a pump in one of the private communities was broken, but NewsChannel 5 has since confirmed that was not the case.
Extreme amounts of water overwhelmed drains and pushed retention ponds to their brink.
The community’s drain system connects to the Lake Worth Drainage District, but that agency is subject to regulations limiting the amount of water it can discharge and at what rate. So it was not able to grant Boca Chase permission to open its control gate into the LWDD system until Thursday.
The move comes too late for Shari Dragos.
“I canceled the whole day yesterday, missed a whole day of work,” she explained.
The Boca Chase property management company, United Community, said in an email to residents the issue is beyond anyone’s control and will require patience and a break in the weather before its completed solved.