Emergency Managers In ‘Defense Mode’ As Okanogan Flood Outlook Changes To Lower Level

The flooded Okanogan River flowing through downtown Omak, Friday, May 18, 2018.
The flooded Okanogan River flowing through downtown Omak, Friday, May 18, 2018. CREDIT: EMILY SCHWING/N3

A week ago, forecasters were predicting the Okanogan River might crest this weekend near a record flood mark set back in 1972. Now, emergency managers are moving into “defense mode” and are now predicting somewhat lower water levels.

That’s because the cooler weather is expected in the coming days, according to the National Weather Service, which will likely slow snowmelt in the mountains.

But there is some uncertainty since forecasters are not sure how much snow has already melted or how much more might come down from Canada. 

Equipment and personnel that are no longer needed for flood response are being released, but emergency management teams plan to remain in Okanogan County at least through the weekend. They’re working to strengthen the sandbag barriers they’ve been building all week to protect homes and critical infrastructure. Managers are also concerned about water-saturated ground that could cause instability. 

A flash flood watch is also still in effect as thunderstorms and rain move through the region. Evacuation advisories issued by the Confederated Tribes of the Colville for at least eight homes in East Omak also remain in effect.

Related Stories:

The flooded Okanogan River flowing through downtown Omak, Friday, May 18, 2018.

Emergency Managers In ‘Defense Mode’ As Okanogan Flood Outlook Changes To Lower Level

A week ago, forecasters were predicting the Okanogan River might crest this weekend near a record flood mark set back in 1972. Now, emergency managers are moving into “defense mode” and are now predicting somewhat lower water levels. Continue Reading Emergency Managers In ‘Defense Mode’ As Okanogan Flood Outlook Changes To Lower Level

Read More »
The Okanogan River from a drone video by Okanogan County Emergency Management, May 11, 2018.

Okanogan And Ferry County Flooding: Emergency Information And Updates

Conditions in Okanogan and Ferry counties have moved to a major flood state, where Governor Jay Inslee has declared an emergency. The Okanogan River is expected to continue rising through the weekend and through the following week to a level not reached since the historic flood of 1972.
Continue Reading Okanogan And Ferry County Flooding: Emergency Information And Updates

Read More »