The Satsop and part of the Chehalis rivers were under flood warnings Tuesday (Jan. 7) after days of heavy rain. Grays Harbor Emergency Management has closed about a dozen roads across the county because of flooding or landslides.
“We have a couple landslides that have occurred overnight and in the morning. One slide is near Moclips on state Route 109 at milepost 34. The last report I got was that it was still blocking both lanes,” Hannah Cleverly, the GHEM deputy director said Tuesday morning. “The other slide is on state Route 109 at milepost 2, just west of 109 spur in Hoquiam. That slide is still active. They are still watching it and seeing what it will do. They have a (Washington State Department of Transportation) geologist on scene assessing the slide. I expect it to be closed at least into this afternoon or evening.”
Standing water, on roadways and nearly up to the doorstep in some cases, was causing problems countywide and likely will continue to into the weekend.
“Various roads are closed due to flood. The Satsop River is in flood warning and the Chehalis River near Porter is in flood warning,” Cleverly said.
The flood warning is in effect until Friday (Jan. 10) afternoon. The Chehalis River is expected to crest at about a foot above flood stage around 10 p.m. Wednesday (Jan. 8).
The National Weather service said, “the Chehalis River in Grays Harbor will flood low pasture lands and some roads. High tidal levels at Aberdeen will worsen flooding along the lower reaches.”
GHEM’s website lists road closures (tinyurl.com/GHRoadClosures) and places where residents can get sandbags (tinyurl.com/GHSandbags).
Cleverly stressed the dangers that come with flood water.
“People should not drive through any water. It only take a small amount of water to lift a car up,” she said. “One of the sayings we like people to remember is ‘Turn around, don’t drown.’ Don’t ever enter into flooded roadways. We don’t want anybody to pass through flooded roads. If you come across a road that is flooded and doesn’t have any signage, please call the Grays Harbor Communications non-emergency number (360-533-8765) and let us know.”