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Jan-20-2012 14:44printcomments

City of Salem Flood-High Water Information

The non-emergency public phone line for flood related information is 503-540-9015.

Salem Oregon flood photo by Jerry Freeman

(SALEM) - The City of Salem Emergency Operations Center is continuing to coordinate flood recovery and safety planning activities throughout the City.

The critical infrastructure of the City remains intact and operational. Resources continue to be dedicated to address flooding issues while still maintaining essential services to the public. The City’s water supply has remained intact and operational throughout the flooding event, and water IS safe to drink from the City system.

However, even as the flood waters recede, the public is reminded that emergencies of many kinds can happen in our area with little or no warning. Everyone should have at home an adequate supply of bottled drinking water and emergency food. Emergency kits should be prepared at all times to include at least one gallon of fresh water per person per day.

For further information on emergency kits and how to prepare, please refer to the City of Salem website at management.

Water levels on most creeks and streams in the Salem area continue to go down. The water level of the Willamette River in Salem is currently 27 feet and is expected to crest at approximately 29 feet between 4:00 pm and 10:00 pm today, but waters are receding in many areas around the City. Several roads and streets have been re-opened and City crews are evaluating the safety of opening additional roads. Please continue to exercise caution when out and about. Report high water on roadways, and do not attempt to drive through high water areas. Refer to the City of Salem website for road closure information.

Efforts on January 19 were primarily focused on addressing immediate safety and security concerns, identifying hazardous areas and conditions, protecting infrastructure and safeguarding the public. These efforts kept the majority or our resources very busy throughout the day and night hours. Several street sweepers were out throughout the night cleaning up streets that had been flooded.

Operations today will be focused on recovery from the emergency situations encountered yesterday and preparing for further rain, wind and possible rising water levels. Street barricades and sandbags will be removed when appropriate, the bridge on Airport Rd SE between State St and Mission St will be inspected for structural integrity and crews will be cleaning up throughout Salem. Many of the people who left their residences are now able to return. As waters recede in areas creeks and streams, crews will be working to remove debris when it is safe. Please DO NOT attempt to remove debris or objects from streams and creeks, as conditions are still hazardous and pose a substantial risk.

If your house or business experienced damage from a sewage backup, information about how to safely clean the area is posted on the City’s website. Please examine the areas that experienced high water or flooding during yesterday’s event and try to identify any actions that can be taken to prevent or minimize and possible flooding in the future.

The non-emergency public phone line for flood related information is 503-540-9015.

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