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Heavy Rains Cause Flooding and Overflows in Washington County

January 18, 2017

Rapid snowmelt and heavy rains have swollen local streams and filled the stormwater drainage system and sanitary sewers to near capacity across much of Washington County on Wednesday morning causing localized flooding and several reported sewage overflows. 

Clean Water Services' four treatment facilities and 41 sewage pump stations kept pace with the high flows, but local systems reported rain-swollen sanitary sewer overflows. Overflows of rain-diluted sewage were reported in Aloha:

  • Near SW 198th Avenue and SW Cascadia Street; and
  • Clean Water Services' Aloha 3 Pump Station on SW 209th Avenue at Butternut Creek.  

Crews have responded to both overflows and posted barricades and signs. The public should avoid contact with flood waters in the area due to the possibility of increased bacteria in the water.

Wet Weather Tips in the Event of Flooding or Sanitary Sewer Overflow

  1. Avoid high water—Always stay out of flood waters and swollen creeks. In heavy rain and flood conditions, even without a sewage spill, there is always a risk of bacteria, chemicals and other pollutants in the water.
  2. Heed the signs—If there is a sewage spill, signs will be posted in areas accessible to the public. Please pay attention to the signs and keep people and pets out of the area. 
  3. Wash with soap—If you come into contact with floodwater or water where there has been a sewer overflow, keep it out of your mouth and wash with soap and hot water. Wash shoes and other items that contact the water.
  4. Report it—If you see signs of a sewer overflow (water coming out of a manhole lid, sewage debris in water), please report it by calling Clean Water Services at 503.547.8100 or after hours 503.681.3600. Residents should not try to replace manhole lids. 
  5. Protect your property—Make sure gutters, downspouts and storm drains are clear. If water is rising, sand and bags are available at several Washington County self-serve stations
  6. Check road conditions—For an updated list of Washington County roads impacted by flooding visit wc-roads.com or monitor @WashCoRoads on Twitter.

"There are more than 45,000 public storm drains in Washington County," said Mark Jockers of Clean Water Services. “Thanks to the public who helped clear ice, slush and debris from neighborhood storm drains to keep water flowing.”

Everything we do at Clean Water Services aims to protect public health, while enhancing the natural environment. Combining science and nature, we clean water and return it to the Tualatin River, so it can be used again. More than 570,000 customers enjoy clean water and healthy rivers and streams as a result of our innovative water management solutions, drainage management, water-quality and stream-enhancement projects, habitat protection and more.

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Contacts

Mark Jockers
Government & Public Affairs Manager
Clean Water Services
503.681.4450 (o)
503.701.4293 (m)
jockersm@cleanwaterservices.org

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