Missoula County Floods 2018
May 10, 2018 10:00 AM
Location: Missoula: Orchard Homes area, Tower Street Seeley Lake: Boy Scout Road, C
Street, Cabin Lane, and Deer Park off of Airport Road, Morrell Creek
Started: May 2018
Agencies: Missoula County Sheriff’s Office, Missoula Rural Fire Department, National Weather
Service, Army Corps of Engineers, Missoula Fire Department, Missoula County Public Works, Seeley
Lake Volunteer Fire Department, Missoula County Type 3 Incident Management Team, Missoula
County Search and Rescue, Missoula County Office Of Emergency Management.
The combination of a very large snowpack and recent precipitation has resulted in early season flooding. Water levels at the Clark Fork river gauge above Missoula are currently expected to crest Thursday evening through Friday afternoon at 13.5 feet (major flooding) and remain at those levels through the weekend. A Type III Incident Management Team continues to manage the incident. Approximately 60 homes in the Missoula Orchard Homes area were notified by the Sheriff’s Office to evacuate. These structures were identified as needing immediate evacuation. The Sheriff’s Office has established roadblocks in the Orchard Homes area. Residents who are under an evacuation ORDER will not be allowed back in past the road blocks. However, as conditions allow some homeowners may be allowed into isolated areas to perform additional preventive measures to protect their home. We ask the public to remember that this is a dynamic and ever-changing situation and public safety is our number one priority. Residents around the evacuation area are strongly advised to make emergency preparations to evacuate, as flood waters are expected to continue to rise. If evacuation ORDERS are issued, time is limited to leave your residence — make final preparations NOW. Self-evacuation is recommended.
An evacuation ORDER is now in effect for the following areas:
• Tower Street, North of 3rd Street • Kehrwald Drive • Channel Drive • Nancy Lou Drive • Keck Street and Stone Street – North of Flamingo Drive • Schmidt Road • Off Mullan Road
Due to danger from flooding conditions residents are being ordered to evacuate immediately. Residents affected, please check in at the information trailer set up in the Wheat Montana parking lot on the corner of 3rd Street and Reserve.
Sign up for Smart 911 alerts (smart911.com) to receive emergency notifications from Missoula County.
-Tower Street will be closed to all traffic -Nancy Lou Drive will be closed to all traffic -Stone Street, N. of Flamingo Drive will be closed to all traffic -Schmidt Road will be closed to all traffic.
Avoid driving or walking through flood water. If you come into contact with flood water be sure to wash off your clothes and skin immediately. Moving water is more powerful than you think. 6 inches of water can knock you off your feet and 12 inches of water will move cars. Flood water can carry hidden debris that can be dangerous to the public and responders. Flood waters are very cold, avoid overexposure during sandbagging operations and wear proper personal protective gear. Adhere to reasonable work to rest ratios. Treat power lines and power poles as if they are live and conducting electricity in flood waters. Don’t touch metal fencing or anything metal in flood waters as it can conduct electricity and is an electrocution hazard.
Public safety is authorities’ top priority. The public should not violate road blocks or trespass on private property. Deputies are patrolling evacuated areas to protect private property. Anyone caught trespassing or violating road blocks may be arrested. Protecting homes should not need to be a concern for residents who have evacuated. Avoid traveling in flooded areas. Current road closures include Tower Street north of Third Street, Nancy Lou Drive, Stone Street north of Flamingo Drive and Schmidt Road. The public should avoid flooded areas all together. So-called “looky-loos” hinder public safety efforts. Do not attempt to recreate in the water. We are experiencing water levels not seen since the 1970s. River levels are high, currents are fast and debris is widespread. Emergency responders are working across the county as flooding unfolds and should not need to be pulled from that work. Residents should photograph and report hazards using the online form at https://veoci.com/veoci/p/form/rf6uvjqv25jv#tab=entryForm.
Thanks to generous donations and community support, the County has set up a sandbagging station and central resources hub at the Orchard Homes Country Life Club at 2537 3rd St. W. Missoula County Public Works delivered 2,500 more sandbags there Thursday. In Seeley Lake, sandbags can be obtained at the Seeley Lake Volunteer Fire Department. Missoula County Public Works has distributed 72,500 sandbags in the County to date. Resources are limited to purchase sand are limited. Monetary donations through United Way of Missoula County go toward purchasing sand. Sandbagging operations will commence depending on availability of sand, sandbags and volunteers. Volunteers for sandbagging may register at: http://bit.ly/MissoulaSandbagging Volunteers will be contacted when sandbagging activities are needed and coordinated by community partners. Volunteers must have current health insurance in order to help with sandbagging. The U.S. Army Corps delivered 10,000 additional sandbags to Missoula County Public Works Wednesday that will be available to the public if needed, with 90,000 more on the way.
American Red Cross
Missoula: Christ the King Church, located at 1400 Gerald Ave. in Missoula. Seeley Lake: Mission Bible Fellowship at 3158 Highway 83 in Seeley. Residents seeking shelter should call 1-800-272-6668.
A flood information line, 258-INFO, has been established and is staffed Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Callers will hear an updated recording after hours. A public information trailer is set up at the Wheat Montana parking lot at 2520 S 3rd St W. and is staffed from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Information is posted after hours.
Missoula Water will provide access to potable water. Interested parties should check in with front office at 1345 W. Broadway and bring clean containers. Staff will be available to help Monday-Friday from 7:30 a.m.5:30 p.m. Call 552-6700.
Residents affected by flooding can request assistance by filling out the request for disaster assistance form online at https://veoci.com/veoci/p/form/gwpd53qgx6dk#tab=entryForm.