Flood Warning; Increased Landslide Threat

NWS_2012A flood warning is in effect for the Skokomish River and heavy rain will lead to an increased threat of landslides.

According to the National Weather Service, heavy rain over the south slopes of the Olympics overnight has driven the Skokomish above the 17.5-foot major flood stage. The river will stay around 17.6 feet until about 10 PM tonight before slowly receding. The Skok isn’t expected to drop below the 16.5-foot flood stage until early Saturday morning.

012816 skok 9 AM

Flooding is occurring in the Skokomish Valley and Skokomish Valley Road and Bourgault Road West are currently closed.

Forecasters also say rainfall over the last several months, and in particular the last couple of weeks, has increased soil moisture to high levels. The current storm will produce heavy rainfall in the mountains and up to an inch and a half in the lowlands through\ this afternoon. This amount of rain will put extra pressure on soil instability. Because of the long term saturation of the soil and the intensity of the rain, the current storm is capable of triggering isolated landslides in landslide prone area such as steep hillsides and coastal bluffs. A slide has been reported on Highway 12 in Grays Harbor County.

012816 SR12 slide