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Gov. Inslee issues state of emergency for 20 counties dealing with flooding

A road closed due to flooding.

OLYMPIA, Wash. — Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday proclaimed a state of emergency for 20 counties fighting flooding in eastern Washington.

The move frees up state resources in the event of flooding or other weather-related damage.

“The continual rain showers and early snow melt creates the potential for rising waters, destructive landslides and damage to our critical infrastructure, including our power grid and transportation system,” Inslee said. “This is a proactive move to ensure that state agencies are able to do everything reasonably possible to help communities recover quickly in the event major damage occurs.”

The counties under the proclamation include: Adams, Asotin, Benton, Chelan, Columbia, Douglas, Ferry, Franklin, Garfield, Grant, Kittitas, Klickitat, Lincoln, Okanogan, Pend Oreille, Spokane, Stevens, Whitman, Walla Walla and Yakima.

According to emergency management officials:

  • Flood warnings were issued in more than a dozen locations over the weekend.
  • Officials have been responding to requests for assistance including dispatching Washington Conservation Corps crew members to the City of Sprague for help filling sandbags on Saturday and locating pumps to manage flood waters
  • 40 Washington National Guardsmen are scheduled to arrive today to assist with sandbagging efforts