Flooding closes streets, leaves residents scrambling to fill sandbags
January 7, 2009
NEW — 12:07 p.m. Jan. 7, 2008
Issaquah Creek spilled over its banks early this morning, closing some streets.
The flooding became so bad that water crossed the roadway, forcing the city to close Newport Way Southwest from Wildwood Boulevard Southwest to Front Street South, and Sycamore Drive Southeast from Front Street South to Southeast Sycamore.
The Public Works Department delivered about 25 loads of sand and 5,000 bags for residents in “the flats,” or flood prone area alongside the creek, according to Scott Wright, city senior maintenance lead for storm and sewer.
Anyone still needing sand and bags should call Public Works at 837-3470 for a free delivery.
“Depending upon the volume of calls, the sand should be delivered within the hour or hour and a half,” Wright said.
Deliveries were made this morning to Sycamore Drive, First Avenue, Northeast Dogwood Street and Newport Way.
He added that residents should know the sand will not be placed on city right of ways nor will Public Works personnel be able to help fill bags.
“So be sure to use what you order. Don’t order 14 yards of sand if all you’re going to use is six,” Wright said. “Also, we won’t be back to collect what you don’t use.”
If you were going to build a wall around your place, you should get 14 yards, he said. Otherwise, six yards should be sufficient for sandbagging small areas.
That news came as a surprise to Tracy McCarroll, who has lived at the corner of Sycamore Drive and Front Street for four years.
“Our house was built to handle the flood zone. But the water is getting higher in the garage,” she said. “So, when they delivered sand bags and said we have to fill the bags ourselves, that was news to me.”
Further north, a torrent of brown water roared past the Park Shore Apartments, located near the Issaquah Fish Hatchery.
“The force of the floodwaters moved the Dumpster,” Jon Zintel, a Park Shore resident said.
Zintel, who moved to the complex 10 months ago and grew up in Issaquah, said he was aware of the creek’s propensity for flooding in the winter months. He lives on the top level of the three-story complex. Residents spent the morning moving their cars from the ground floor parking lot next to the creek. A motorcycle was moved from the lot into a storage unit at the complex.
Rene Grove, a neighbor of Zintel’s, moved to the apartment Dec. 15 from Ballard.
“I was surprised by how quickly the creek rose,” Grove said as she carried her 3-year-old son, Denali, through the parking lot.
“I like the creek setting,” Zintel said of his reason for living near the Issaquah Creek. “It’s nice and scenic and I like it here, even though there is a river flowing under me.”
Weather reports predict another one to two inches of rain tonight. Wright said the creek is not expected to crest until noon tomorrow.
For up-to-date flooding information, check the city’s Web site or tune into the city’s radio station 1700 AM.