Surprising spring snowfall dusts Issaquah in white

April 7, 2011

Snowfall blanketed the Overdale Park neighborhood in Issaquah late Wednesday night. By Larry Lohrman

NEW — 8 a.m. April 7, 2011

Sure, spring started last month, but Old Man Winter is back.

Snowfall blanketed Issaquah and surrounding areas — especially neighborhoods in the Issaquah Highlands and on Cougar, Squak and Tiger mountains — late Wednesday night and early Thursday morning. Residents reported about 1 inch of snow accumulation in some places.

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National Weather Service issues wind advisory

March 10, 2011

NEW — 8 a.m. March 10, 2011

Forecasters issued a wind advisory for Western Washington early Thursday morning, as strong winds swept across the region.

National Weather Service meteorologists in Seattle said the Issaquah area could experience winds between 13 and 21 mph, and gusts as high as 26 mph.

Forecasters expect the strongest winds to occur in the afternoon. The advisory is in place until 9 p.m.

The wind is also all but certain to whip rain throughout the area Thursday. The chance of precipitation is 100 percent during the day and 60 percent at night.

Strong winds can cause power outages and topple trees.

The weather service issues a wind advisory if the forecast calls for sustained winds between 30 and 39 mph, and gusts between 45 to 57 mph.

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Forecasters issue flood watch as rain continues to fall

January 15, 2011

NEW — 6 a.m. Jan. 15, 2011

National Weather Service meteorologists urged residents to prepare for possible flooding as rain-sodden conditions continue throughout the region Saturday.

Forecasters in Seattle issued a flood watch through Monday afternoon for most Western Washington counties. The latest moisture-laden system could drop 3 to 6 inches of rain.

Precipitation — more rainfall and a brief-but-intense snowstorm — saturated the ground throughout from Tuesday onward.

Issaquah emergency planners reminded residents to keep storm drains near homes clear of fallen leaves and other debris. Call the city Public Works Operations Department at 837-3470 to address larger storm water issues.

Residents can receive real-time Issaquah Creek flood data from a flood gauge in Hobart. Planners use the gauge to determine the city’s flood phases.

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Issaquah tragedies, triumphs define a tumultuous year

December 28, 2010

Traffic lines up on state Route 900 at Northwest Talus Drive in February. State Department of Transportation crews completed the long-running project in 2010. By Greg Farrar

The economy lurched from the recession, population growth all but stalled and Issaquah — after cutbacks and setbacks in 2009 — defied the odds to reach major milestones throughout 2010.

Momentum returned in 2010 after a year spent in a holding pattern. Set against the backdrop of a fragile recovery, leaders cut the ribbon on businesses and roads, laid the foundation for preservation and construction, and marked tragedies and successes. Read more

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Windstorm downs trees, knocks out power for Issaquah residents

December 21, 2010

Strong winds downed trees and prompted road closures near Issaquah as a late-fall windstorm left thousands of residents across in the region in the dark early Dec. 18.

Puget Sound Energy said the storm knocked out power for more than 300 Issaquah customers as the storm swept through the region in the predawn hours. Crews completed restoring power to Issaquah customers just after 2 p.m. the same day.

The storm also toppled trees and forced transportation officials to close roads in the Issaquah area overnight.

The state Department of Transportation closed state Route 18 from Issaquah-Hobart Road Southeast to Interstate 90 at about 1 a.m. Dec. 18. The section reopened just before 8 a.m. the same day.

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Issaquah Creek menaces homes, floods streets

December 14, 2010

City emergency responders turn attention to mudslides in aftermath

The rain-swollen East Fork of Issaquah Creek spills into a parking lot at Northeast Crescent Drive and Front Street North on Dec. 12. By Megan Ching

Rainfall gorged Issaquah Creek and menaced homes, businesses and roads Dec. 12, as a late-fall storm reminded emergency officials and residents to plan for a rain-soaked winter.

The deluge turned the creek into a roiling broth the color of chocolate milk and led to flooding on roads and in Issaquah neighborhoods. Read more

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Issaquah Creek swells as residents face floodwaters in neighborhoods and on roads

December 12, 2010

Issaquah Creek swells near a building along Northwest Gilman Boulevard as rain continues to fall Sunday. By Heather Blume

NEW — 2:30 p.m. Dec. 12, 2010

Forecasters expect heavy rainfall to continue through Sunday night.

The deluge has turned Issaquah Creek into a roiling broth the color of chocolate milk and led to flooding on roads and in Issaquah neighborhoods.

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Winter is the time for optimism

December 7, 2010

My husband accuses me of complaining too much — always looking for the negative point of view. I insist I am only looking at all possibilities, so that when things happen that are not the worst, it makes me happy. He doesn’t believe it.

How do gardeners put a positive spin on that blast of snow and ice that came before Thanksgiving? We had below 14 degrees at night in our yard on the plateau. When it didn’t even thaw during the day, I started to worry. I know we lost my jasmine espalier, but the wonderful smell last summer made it worth the gamble. This winter according to weather gurus is under the influence of La Niña, and will be worse than usual. Is there anything positive for gardeners about that?

Warm winters these past few years have enticed us to grow more borderline plants. Beautiful evergreen shrubs that might do well in Seattle have been common here recently. We now see ceanothus in many varieties, a complete spectrum of flax plants, rockrose in all sizes and colors, many kinds of hebe and the evergreen clematis vine everywhere. Even old standbys such as some cotoneaster, sarcococca, skimmia and English laurel could be top-damaged with deep freezes.

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La Niña conditions can pose winter health risks

December 6, 2010

NEW — 6 a.m. Dec. 6, 2010

Winter does not start until Dec. 21, but recent snowfall and windstorms serve as a reminder for residents to prepare for a safe and healthy winter.

Forecasters predict a colder and wetter winter than normal for the Pacific Northwest due to La Niña conditions. Ocean temperatures near the equator indicate a La Niña winter is in the offing.

Increased precipitation and snowmelt could mean flooding in the Issaquah area.

Flooding due to heavy rains and melting snow can make well water unsafe to drink, because floodwaters carry diseases and other contaminants. If a well has flooded, assume the drinking water in a home is contaminated.

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Issaquah braces for rain-soaked winter, creek floods

November 2, 2010

City completed projects to reduce risk since last flood

Mike Crossley (yellow vest) works in the HAM radio communication station during a Community Emergency Response Team flood drill. By Autumn Monahan

January rain turned placid Issaquah Creek into a debris-filled torrent in early 2009 — and emergency planners hope fresh memories of the flood prompt residents to prepare for the rain-soaked winter on the horizon.

Long before fall rain blanketed the area, Issaquah and King County emergency planners had prepared to respond to Issaquah Creek flooding.

Meteorologists predict La Niña conditions — colder-than-normal temperatures and greater-than-normal rain- and snowfall — in the months ahead. The combination has emergency planners concerned about rain-gorged Issaquah Creek and the potential for disaster.

“If you look at Issaquah Creek now, you think, ‘Oh, that’s a nice, pretty little creek.’ It can turn into a roaring monster pretty quick,” Bret Heath, city Public Works Operations and emergency management director, said last week.

The city has completed a series of flood-control projects in the 21 months since the most recent flood, including a high-profile floodplain restoration effort at Squak Valley Park North.

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