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Inslee proclaims state of emergency due to flooding

OLYMPIA, Washington — Governor Jay Inslee has proclaimed a state of emergency for eastern Washington counties responding to flood conditions.

Flooding is impacting communities in Ferry, Okanogan and Pend Oreille counties. The proclamation covers these three plus the 17 other eastern Washington counties facing an increased threat of flooding over the next seven days.

“Flooding caused by recent rains and snow melt has fouled water and sewage treatment facilities, threatened state highways and local roads and caused some people to leave their homes,” Inslee said. “Continued higher temperatures are predicted to increase snow melt and cause additional flooding as rivers and streams continue to rise to record or near record levels.”

Covered by the proclamation are Adams, Asotin, Benton, Chelan, Columbia, Douglas, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Kittitas, Klickitat, Lincoln, Okanogan, Pend Oreille, Spokane, Stevens, Yakima, Walla Walla, and Whitman counties.

In his proclamation, Inslee notes flooding is resulting in road closures and the establishment of alternate transportation routes, self-evacuations, impacts to local utility services, localized reductions in available drinking water, and damage to public and private property and infrastructure.

State agencies and local jurisdictions are coordinating resources to address the impacts caused by the flooding, and the governor’s proclamation directs state agencies to implement appropriate response activities

The State Emergency Operations Center at the Washington Military Department’s Camp Murray was activated today to monitor local efforts and coordinate resources to help local officials respond. The proclamation allows the governor to activate resources of the Washington National Guard, if necessary.

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