Barriers better than sandbags? Greece residents test out new system

June 07, 2019 07:17 PM

GREECE, N.Y. (WHEC) -- Help may have arrived for some Greece residents who live along Lake Ontario thanks to a Canadian-based company.

Innovative Global Products introduced residents to new barriers -- barriers that owners say work better than sandbags.


The quick-to-deploy water barrier system is called Rapid-H2O. The product uses a series of waterproof tarp boxes in metal frames that can quickly be unfolded and filled with water. The system can then be folded up and stored for future use. 

"I work out of this house and sitting here every three seconds having the house shaking, vibrating...the stress is amazing," said Jim Leary.

Leary lives on Edgemere Drive in Greece.

Before 2017, he had about 20 to 30 feet of beach but now that Lake Ontario has risen to flood stage, the water is practically lapping at his door. He's placed hundreds of sandbags around his home, but he says it's just not enough. 

"You can see what it's done to my property. The erosion is amazing," said Leary. "I've had water in my crawl space up to three feet deep."

Luckily, help may have arrived. 

On Thursday, the Rapid-H2O system was demonstrated for Leary and a few of his neighbors.

"It's a much better solution I think to sandbagging," said Ian Anderson, who heads business development for IGP.

The demonstration took only minutes. News10NBC learned that about 16 feet of barriers with the water inside provide about five tons of protection. 

But can it work against the waves of Lake Ontario?

That's the purpose of the test on the Leary's property. 

"This should be enough weight...," said Leary. "I think they're definitely going to help. I wish I had 50 feet, but I'll take what I can get at this point."

About 50 feet of barriers would cost about $6,000. But it would cost much less if several neighbors purchased them.

"You have to look at it as an investment rather than a cost," said Anderson. 


Lynette Adams

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