- Associated Press - Thursday, March 26, 2015

CLARKSVILLE, Ind. (AP) - High Ohio River waters left behind a mess, but Clarksville town employees believe they can clean it up ahead of Thunder over Louisville.

“With the amount of people we have working down there, between street department employees and parks department employees, we’ll get it done, cleaned up and ready to go for Thunder,” Clarksville Parks & Recreation spokesman Ken Conklin told the News and Tribune (https://bit.ly/1Br4gIa ).

The Ohio River is steadily receding after spending more than a week above flood stage, leaving behind debris on the river’s shores at Ashland Park and Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Park. A stretch of road along Jackson Street and Emery Crossing within Lewis and Clark Bicentennial Park is “about 75 percent complete on the cleanup stage,” said Clarksville Street Commissioner Brad Cummings.

The Ohio River shoreline within Ashland Park has become a popular spot from which to watch the Thunder fireworks display. Cleaning up the area will be a challenge, Cummings said.

“We’ve got a couple things we’ve got to worry about there; one is getting equipment down over the hill to perform the cleanup, and two, allowing the water to go down just a little bit further so we’re not jeopardizing any of the equipment, getting it stuck and potentially damaging anything,” Cummings said. “Ashland Park, actually with the way the water level is now, we’re not able to determine how much debris is actually going to remain up on top, (but) we’ve got a pretty good idea.”

Once the river waters have receded enough, the street department will ideally use a Bobcat and a backhoe - both equipped with clamshell buckets - to clear the debris. The work won’t begin until that happens, Cummings said.

“We’re getting to a point now where it’s real manageable, and if we get good weather, some dry days there to allow the bottoms to dry out, we’re going to be ready to go at any given time,” Cummings said. “Once the weather permits for us to get down there, we’ll get down there that day.”

Overtime won’t be necessary to complete the work unless the area receives a long run of bad weather, Cummings said.

Thunder over Louisville is scheduled for April 18.

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Information from: News and Tribune, Jeffersonville, Ind., https://www.newsandtribune.com


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