For the second January in a row, the Housatonic River spilled its banks. Marvelwood students were called into action for their drone skills by the Town of Kent’s emergency management services. Allan Nash '21, Edward Duffy '20, Oliver Sanchez '20, George Ryan '22 and Christopher Scherer '20 along with Science Department Chair Laurie Doss spent Saturday afternoon with the Kent Volunteer Fire Department and NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) assessing and monitoring the ice build-up on the Housatonic River and the flooding along its banks.
Last year, unseasonal temperatures on both ends of the thermometer caused an unprecedented ice dam that led to extreme flooding. Roads were closed, homes and business were evacuated, and emergency workers and the Town of Kent were left unsure as to how it would end.
Marvelwood played a key role in assessing the situation on the river, working directly with emergency crews and town officials. Accomplished drone operator Able Zhou '18 recorded video footage of the river, which was used for monitoring, assessing, and planning. The bird’s eye vantage point of the drone enabled emergency workers to see the full extend of the ice build-up and its impact on the river. At one point, it was determined, based on drone footage, that the dam has doubled in size in just a few days. National attention was focused on the Housatonic River as news crews and even the Weather Channel camped out and monitored the eerily quiet and stunningly beautiful river, covered with large chunks or white and blue ice. Eventually, the ice dam broke up and the situation resolved itself with little lasting damage.
Marvelwood is proud and honored to be able to help our local community throughout the year.
See the Drone Footage!