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State of Emergency Declared in Washington amid Killer Storms

Posted by feww on December 10, 2015

U.S. Pacific NW storms kill two, cut power to thousands, unleash mudslides

Governor Inslee has declared a state of emergency in Washington State as record-breaking storms continue to dump historic amounts of precipitation over the region.

State EOC activated due to hazardous weather throughout Washington

The State Emergency Operations Center (EOC) was activated at a Phase III level at 08:30 a.m. today in response to severe weather conditions throughout Washington State. Staff at the State EOC are monitoring the situation and available to assist with the needs of affected communities.

The Northwest Weather Service (NWS) has issued flood warnings for 25 rivers above flood stage in fourteen counties. The NWS has issued a variety of advisories, watches and warnings for coastal flooding, high winds, and other hazardous weather throughout the state.  This includes a high wind warning for Spokane and parts of southeast Washington.

Local emergency operation centers have been activated in nine counties — Cowlitz, King, Lewis, Pierce, Skagit, Snohomish, Spokane, Thurston, and Yakima counties.

Highlights

  • A buoy 440km off the Oregon coast showed waves were over 12m, as of posting, reported NWS.
  • 13 days this year with 2.5cm+ rainfall in Seattle, which was a new record. Total rainfall on those 13 days was 45cm, or 45% of the yearly total 100.5cm.
  • Storms dumped up to 47.6cm of rain on parts of Oregon, and more than 31cm on several areas in Washington.
  • Storm-related incidents have claimed at least two lives in Oregon, as of posting.
  • Tillamook County in Oregon has declared a State of Emergency following days of extreme rains that caused widespread flooding, mudslides and damage.
  • Severe flooding and damage have also been reported throughout the Oregon coast.
  • Sinkholes, cracks and landslides reported in multiple roadways, including on U.S. 101.

The national Weather Service (NWS) has issued multiple hazardous weather warnings for the region including the following Coastal Flood Warning

COASTAL HAZARD MESSAGE
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE PORTLAND OR
558 AM PST THU DEC 10 2015

ORZ001-002-WAZ021-110000-
/O.CON.KPQR.CF.W.0001.151210T1700Z-151212T0000Z/
NORTH OREGON COAST-CENTRAL OREGON COAST-SOUTH WASHINGTON COAST-
558 AM PST THU DEC 10 2015

...COASTAL FLOOD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 9 AM THIS MORNING
TO 4 PM PST FRIDAY..

A COASTAL FLOOD WARNING REMAINS IN EFFECT FROM 9 AM THIS MORNING
TO 4 PM PST FRIDAY.

* TIDAL OVERFLOW: TIDES AND COMBINED STORM SURGE WILL RUN 2 FEET
  ABOVE THE ASTRONOMICAL PREDICTED VALUES THIS WEEK. THE HIGHEST
  TIDES OF THE CYCLE WILL OCCUR AROUND NOON TO 3 PM THURSDAY AND
  FRIDAY.

* RIVER FLOWS: RIVERS WILL BE RUNNING HIGH DUE TO RUNOFF FROM
  THE RECENT RAINFALL...AND THE ADDITIONAL RAINFALL EXPECTED
  THURSDAY AND FRIDAY. HIGH RUNOFF WILL INCREASE FLOOD POTENTIAL
  IN THE TIDALLY INFLUENCED REACHES AND ESTUARIES OF THE COASTAL
  RIVERS.

* WAVES AND WAVE IMPACTS: DANGEROUS BREAKERS OF 35 TO 45 FEET
  WILL IMPACT THE BEACHES THURSDAY WITH 30 TO 40 FT BREAKERS FOR
  FRIDAY. THE WAVES WILL WASH OVER THE JETTIES...THROW LOGS AND
  DEBRIS FAR ONSHORE...CREATE LARGE SURGES OF WATER ONTO THE
  BEACHES...AND CAUSE SIGNIFICANT BEACH EROSION.

* FLOODING IMPACTS: FLOODING OF LOW LYING AREAS AND ROADS PRONE
  TO TIDAL FLOODING CAN BE EXPECTED AN HOUR OR TWO BEFORE AND
  AFTER THE HIGHEST TIDES.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS..

A COASTAL FLOOD WARNING MEANS THAT FLOODING IS OCCURRING OR
IMMINENT. COASTAL RESIDENTS IN THE WARNED AREA SHOULD BE ALERT
FOR RISING WATER...AND TAKE APPROPRIATE ACTION TO PROTECT LIFE
AND PROPERTY.

BUSINESSES AND RESIDENTS IN AND NEAR THE SURF ZONE...AND ALSO
NEAR BAYS AND ESTUARIES SHOULD BE ALERT FOR THE POSSIBILITY OF
FLOODING AND VERY HIGH WATER SURGING INLAND AND INUNDATING
NORMALLY DRY AREAS BY TAKING PRECAUTION.

THIS IS A DANGEROUS SITUATION. RESIDENTS AND LOCAL OFFICIALS
SHOULD TAKE IMMEDIATE ACTION TO PROTECT LIFE AND PROPERTY IN LOW
LYING AREAS AFFECTED BY THESE ABNORMALLY HIGH TIDES AND SURF.

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