Cape Coral residents prep seawalls ahead of storms



CAPE CORAL

Tropical storms send water over seawalls and can flood people’s yards. They can also fill swales and send water running onto streets. That can make driving dangerous.

Luckily, some in Cape Coral have already begun preparing for this season.

A seawall contractor says homeowners around the Cape Coral Yacht Club, and those in SE Cape, needed seawall repairs the most after Hurricane Irma. Those repairs could be put to the test as soon as Tuesday.

Hurricane Eta tested people’s seawalls last November. Water spilled over seawalls, onto docks and into backyards. Kevin Franz hopes that doesn’t happen with Tropical Storm Elsa.

“The one that was there— I wasn’t quite sure how old it was. I just wanted to get something brand new that would last for many years,” Franz said.

Franz is planning to build a new home in Cape Coral. His first order of business is to put up a seawall.

“The other one possibly starting to crumble a little bit. It’s probably 40+ years old and I felt the importance of a higher height would make a difference,” said Franz.

In SW Cape, workers with Williamson Brothers Marine Construction make their living fixing seawalls. Vice President Jimmy Williamson says Hurricane Irma made it clear to homeowners that you cannot neglect sea walls and expect to get away with it.

“With this tropical storm coming up we’re concerned that there’s going to be a lot of saturation of soil and the ones that didn’t fail during Irma could possibly fail now,” Williamson said.

Williamson adds that homeowners must check their seawalls for horizontal cracks or for erosion behind the wall. If you see these signs, it’s critical that you call a marine contractor before it’s too late.



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