Crews in Tacoma racing to prepare for storms set to hit area this week

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TACOMA, Wash. -- City work crews are getting ready for the nasty weather forecast to hit Western Washington.

Workers in Tacoma spent Tuesday trying to stay ahead of the weather. A fleet of vacuum trucks spent Tuesday cleaning out as many catch basins as they could.

“Wasn’t too bad,” said worker Craig Carter. “You know, except for the kids throwing sticks and rocks.”

Limbs and other debris can turn a city street into a lake during heavy rains.

Tacoma Environmental crews were fanned out across the city, sweeping streets and cleaning out storm drains.

“Trying to make sure that everything is ready to accept water,” said Hugh Messer.

The city maintains thousands of catch basins, which could cause big problems if the rains are too much for them to handle.

“We’ve cleaned a lot of them ahead of time,” said Carter. “I think we’ve got a jump on the rain so I think we’ll be all right.”

Standing water and the risk of flooding can be a threat for most everyone across the region. Work crews are hoping that homeowners will clear leaves from grates to reduce the risk of flooding.