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Floodwaters Cover California Community


By Dan Hounsell Emergency Preparedness
A 'Road Closed' sign partially covered in flood water

Many institutional and commercial facilities in California sit in the crosshairs of a range of natural disasters — most prominently earthquakes and wildfires — that are waiting to happen. Now, facility managers and occupants in several Northern California communities must contend with yet another challenge from nature — flooding.

All roads in and out of Guerneville are closed due to flooding, the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office tells ABC 7 News. Community officials expect the Russian River to hit 46 feet, the highest since 1997.

People who decided to stay are expected to be trapped in there for days. Evacuation orders are in effect for two dozen communities near the Russian River, and the county has set up two evacuation centers to accept evacuees.

For the first time, the county is evacuating its cold weather shelter and moving the homeless and anyone who needs extra help to the Santa Rosa Pavilion. The National Guard is in Guerneville with kayaks as the flood waters continue to rise.

Sonoma County has seen more than its share of natural disasters recently — the area was hit by devastating wildfires in 2017 that burned thousands of homes and charred many hillsides and canyons — and officials are also concerned about mudslides, especially in the hillside neighborhoods along the river and areas ravaged by recent wildfires, according to The Los Angeles Times.

Dan Hounsell is editor-in-chief of Facility Maintenance Decisions and FacilitiesNet.com.

 

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