By Matt Petrillo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Vine Street Expressway remains closed Friday afternoon, still flooded from the historic storm. PennDOT officials say it’s expected to be clear by Saturday, but there’s no timetable for when the highway will reopen because there remains a lot of dirt and debris to be cleaned up.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney said that crews still have a long way to go to get all this water out of here.

From above in Chopper 3, the expressway looks more like a bath or even a canal the way it’s holding water.

Officials say at its peak, the depth of the water was 15 feet.

PennDOT told Eyewitness News seven pumps are on 676 working to get the flood water back into the Schuylkill River. PennDOT says the river has receded enough for this operation.

Below are two images of how the water looked like on Thursday and Friday:

“Recovery process for this is going to take months,” Philadelphia fire commissioner Adam Thiel said. “And we really need your help. The resources the mayor mentioned earlier, we can see a lot of damage in certain places, but we cannot see into people’s homes or basements, so please go online and enter that damage. You can put photos in there, you’re probably not going to get an instant response but rest assured, we have collected that information.”

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“Philadelphia has not experienced such extreme flooding in any of our lifetimes,” Kenney said.

Kenney and other city officials toured the expressway and other areas impacted by flooding. Kenney says the flooding happened after a major pumping station failed.

“The water is receding and we’re beginning to reopen more roadways,” Kenney said.

After the water is cleared, crews will then have to clean up a thick, muddy sediment left behind.

“You need to scrape the mud and debris off the roadway, and then you evaluate the roadway to see if there’s any damage underneath,” Philadelphia Chief Highway Engineer Steve Lorenz said.

As for those who have property damage because of the storm, they’re urged to report it to the city’s Office of Emergency Management. You can report damage by clicking here.

The city says it could take months to recover, but the mayor says the good news is there were no known deaths from the storm.

Get the latest on Ida’s Aftermath on CBS3, CBSN Philly and CBSPhilly.com. Learn more on how to watch and stream CBSN Philly for free, here.

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