Emergency workers in the Seattle area were assessing the damage on Sunday after torrential rain and heavy snowfall hit a large part of the region, making Washington’s largest city a virtual island. Seattle received two inches of rain Thursday, making it its seventh-wettest January day ever recorded. It was also ranked No. 5 on Seattle’s list of its wettest first week of January.
Hoquiam, on the western edge of the state; Olympia; and Quillayute, in Washington’s northwest corner, also saw some of their wettest days on record. According to the National Weather Service Rainier, southwest Olympia, received ten inches of rain and Hoquiam received six inches.
Warning of “imminent flooding,” officials in the Skokomish Valley area, west of Seattle, on Thursday ordered residents to either evacuate or prepare to shelterIn place for 72 hours
On Sunday, the skies cleared up but important roads were still closed. Washington Emergency Management Division advised drivers to avoid the roads. closed roads, saying on Twitter late Saturday that “first responders continue rescuing people ignoring closed road signs.”
Other parts of the state were also affected by the closures. The Cascade Mountains’ main routes connecting the east and west sides were closed for days due to heavy snowfall. Snoqualmie Pass was expected to reopen on Sunday. according to the state’s Department of Transportation. Blewett Pass will also be reopened for freight travel, but Stevens Pass and White Passes will take longer, the agency stated. It has been over a decade since all four passes were closedThe agency said that it would continue to do so for a long time.
Stevens Pass road crew said that there was a problem on Sunday. four-inch-thick “slab of ice”On the snow-free lanes
Washington State University Pullman, in southeastern Washington, cancelled classes Monday and Tuesday in order to allow students to return.
Some areas in Central Washington, including Leavenworth got three feet of snow on Thursday, and some pockets got four feet. This was a record, according to the city in a statement. On Friday, the mayor of Leavenworth declared a state emergency and summoned the National Guard.
Rain and heavy snow raised concerns about avalanches in Cascade Mountains. Seattle Fire Department posted a Twitter video showing a house that had fallen off its foundation. According to the department, both the homeowners and the pet dog were rescued.
According to The Associated Press, a 72 year-old man in Grays Harbor County in the northwest corner of the state died in a torrential downpour Friday after he tried to move his vehicle to higher ground.
In Lewis County, in southwestern Washington, home to Chehalis, the water was receding on Sunday, but “we definitely still have flooding,” said Austin Majors, public information specialist for the county. He said that there had been at most 25 water rescues in that county alone.
Although thousands were without power Friday and Saturday, most outages seemed to have been resolved. Gov. Jay Inslee issued an emergency declaration on Friday that cited “hazardous driving conditions, flooding and extended road closures.”
Meteorologists attribute the weather to a warm front, which had been above the area for a prolonged period and brought with it several inches rain.
Source: NY Times