Army Corps responding as Western Washington rivers are predicted to reach flood stage

Published Oct. 31, 2018

SEATTLE—The Emergency Operations Center at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers activated October 30 and a flood response plan for Lyman, Washington, is underway. The activation is in response to National Weather Service predictions for western Washington rivers, which may crest this weekend above flood stage.

 The Army Corps worked in collaboration with the City of Lyman, Skagit County and State officials to develop a contingency plan to protect City infrastructure with construction of a buried rock trench. The trigger to begin construction of the trench is an official prediction that the Skagit River will rise above flood stage at Concrete. Skagit County has already stockpiled 800 tons of rock in nearby Hamilton for the Lyman construction project. The Corps will supplement local efforts and provide technical and direct assistance.

Flood fight teams are deploying to Lyman and other areas of concern on the Skagit River and to areas of concern in the Nooksack River basin.  Flood engineers plan to monitor sections of damaged levees if the rivers rise as predicted.

Engineers in the Corps’ Reservoir Control Center are monitoring conditions and may be on extended shifts this weekend to respond to forecasted flooding. The RCC manages and regulates Mud Mountain and Howard Hanson Dams, both located near Enumclaw.  Both reservoirs are near empty and have storage space available to greatly reduce the risk of flooding on those rivers. They also manage Ross and Upper Baker dams in the Skagit River basin and Wynoochee dam in the Chehalis River basin when pre-defined flood flow thresholds are imminent in those basins.

Flood fight teams are on alert for the White/Puyallup, Snoqualmie and Snohomish River basins.

Public Law 84-99 enables the Corps to assist state and local authorities in flood fight activities and cost share in the repair of flood protection structures. The purpose is to prevent loss of life and minimize property damage associated with severe weather.

Private citizens seeking sandbags should contact their local government offices.  
The National Weather Service issues flood watches and warnings and should be consulted for that information.

Public Affairs Office

Release no. 18-068