Emergency responders are keeping a close eye on the Susquehanna River as cold temperatures are causing chunks of ice to form.
“This is about as brutally cold as you wanna be out in, and this is the worst that we’ve seen in a long time,” said Harrisburg Fire Chief Brian Enterline.
A long time, indeed. After a few years of mild winters, emergency responders have their eyes on the river.
“As you can see, it’s almost solid chunk flow right now. So, we went from just a little bit to a significant amount of ice in a couple of hours,” Enterline said.
It may look pretty, but its potential for damage is ugly. Enterline said they contact the National Weather and Mid Atlantic Forecast Center every day in these conditions.
“Things on the river can happen pretty quickly, especially with the warm-up coming Monday, Tuesday, next week. We gotta watch the snow pack north of us and what we might see,” Enterline said.
That snow pack is behaving — for now, and so are the water levels.
“The river level being low, that’s a good thing for us because we’ve got a long way to go until we get to the flood stage,” Enterline said.
If it does come to that point, Enterline said frigid temperatures won’t be the only problem.
“We have a lot of residents and a lot of property owners that live in that floodplain. So, that’s why it’s so important for us, as emergency managers, to watch and kinda predict what the weather is going to do,” Enterline said.