Minor flooding expected in Walla Walla, Umatilla counties

Sandbag locations are being set up

Parts of Walla Walla, Pendleton and the Umatilla National Forest may be dealing with some flooding this week.

The National Weather Service in Pendleton issued a Flood Warning on Monday for the Umatilla River near Gibbon affecting Umatilla County.

The river reached 6.6 feet at 9:15 a.m. Monday. Flood stage is 7.0 feet. NWS predicts the river will rise above flood stage around midday and cause minor flooding before falling by Tuesday morning.

The Flood Warning will remain in effect until Tuesday afternoon, NWS reports.

In Washington, Walla Walla County Emergency Management reports water is being diverted from Mill Creek into the Bennington Lake Storage Dam.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reservoir managers told local emergency managers three inches of rain fell in the Mill Creek Basin in a 24-hour period, prompting the diversion.

Roads and trails near Bennington Lake are closed as a precaution during the flood operations.

Walla Walla County says Koncrete Industries at 502 N. 13th Ave. in Walla Walla has sandbags available for purchase: (509) 525-9143. Other sandbag locations may be opening, too.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Walla Walla District flooding resources

Additonal rivers under a Flood Warning Monday:

  • Grande Ronde River near Perry affecting Union County
  • Grande Ronde River at Troy affecting Wallowa and Asotin Counties
  • Imnaha River at Imnaha affecting Wallowa County
  • North Fork John Day River at Monument affecting Grant County
  • John Day River at Service Creek affecting Wheeler County

Umatilla National Forest officials say drivers should look out for washouts, landslides, rocks or boulders affecting roads and trails. Most of the forest roads already have mud, snow or snow drifts.

Drivers are being reminded to "turn around, don't drown." As little as one foot of water on a road can move cars off the road.

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