ADA COUNTY, Idaho – An U.S. Army Corps of Engineers civil engineer from the Walla Walla District Headquarters deployed today to provide technical assistance to Ada County emergency managers as they respond to flooding conditions there, according to Corps emergency management officials at the District headquarters in Walla Walla, Washington.
Marcus Palmer, a civil engineer and chief of Walla Walla District’s Geotechnical Design Section, will assist Ada County’s Emergency Operations Center by identifying potential consequences from a pit capture along the Boise River shoreline near Eagle Island. His work will also involve “reach-back” support from other engineers in the Walla Walla District’s Hydraulics and Hydrology Section to support the emergency-response efforts of Ada County and Flood Control District #10.
Residents of flood-prone areas in and near Ada County are encouraged to keep informed of changing river, stream and weather conditions on the National Weather Service - Boise Office website at http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/boi/ <http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/boi/> – which offers flow data, weather forecasts and flood alerts. Follow flood-response instructions issued by your local emergency management agency https://adacounty.id.gov/accem, and tune-in to local radio and television news stations. Ada County residents can sign up for CodeRED emergency alerts at https://public.coderedweb.com/cne/en-US/BF01DC4DD213.
The Corps’ Walla Walla District continues to coordinate with state and local emergency management agencies.
Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security http://www.bhs.idaho.gov encourages Idaho residents to be prepared to respond to localized flooding. Individuals are encouraged to contact local emergency management agencies to ensure they understand how to receive updates and information specific to their location. Most county emergency management departments in Idaho have flood-preparedness information on their websites. Idaho Bureau of Homeland Security has an alert system that, based on zip code, will send alerts to whatever device residents choose – sign up at https://mystateusa.com/default.aspx?region=670.
Corps water management officials continue coordinating with other federal and non-federal dam managers throughout the greater-Columbia River basin to make adjustments in river system operations that will best accommodate the increased run-off inflows. Reservoirs are being drafted ahead of anticipated heavy spring runoff. The Corps works closely with other agencies and local government entities to notify the public as early as possible when significant changes to flows are necessary.
The Corps is authorized to work with states, counties and other public entities to provide necessary resources and information. The Corps does not have authority to provide disaster assistance directly to individuals. The organization will continue to carefully watch the evolving situation and respond, when requested, with whatever assistance is authorized, appropriate and available.
The first responsibility for protecting homes and property from flood damage rests with the individual. Local governments and agencies, such as flood control districts, may share in this responsibility, and together form a community's first line of defense in preventing flood damages.
Occasionally, however, local resources are not able to control or contain a flood emergency situation. The Corps’ flood disaster assistance program is intended to supplement and assist local governments, institutions and special-purpose districts when more help is needed.
The Walla Walla District is prepared to assist states and municipalities with flood-management support, if requested, said Jeff Stidham, Walla Walla District disaster response manager. That assistance could include technical expertise, supplies and materials, equipment or contracts for emergency flood-fighting work.
“We're watching rivers and streams throughout the Walla Walla District and staying in touch with local emergency officials so, if requested to, we can plan, prepare or act,” said Stidham. “Our top priority is the public’s safety, so we’re encouraging folks in low-lying parts of flood-prone areas stay tuned to information and advisories provided by the National Weather Service or their local emergency-service agencies and be ready to take action according to local flood response plans.”
State, tribal, and county agencies needing disaster assistance from the Corps should contact the Walla Walla District Emergency Management Office at 509-527-7146, or 509-380-4538.
For more information about Emergency Management Assistance, check out the District’s Web site at http://www.nww.usace.army.mil/Missions/Flood-Assistance/.