Spring rain brings potential flooding for Lewis and Clark County

Residents should treat all floodwater as contaminated, take extra precautions

AugustaFlooding

Helena – The National Weather Service has advised upcoming precipitation across much of the Rocky Mountain Front may cause spring flooding. With rainy conditions expected for much of Lewis and Clark County this week, County officials are urging residents to prepare.

Residents should stay up-to-date on changing weather conditions at https://www.weather.gov/tfx/.

Avoid contact with floodwater where possible. All floodwater can contain pathogens and be contaminated with sewage and wastewater, pet and livestock waste and other pollutants. The COVID-19 has been detected in wastewater nationwide.  While it is unknown if the virus is transmitted through contact with contaminated wastewater and incidence of the COVID-19 in Montana is low, extra precautions should be taken where septic systems may contaminate floodwater. People working in floodwater should avoid ingestion or contact, and wash hands and sanitize after exposure.

Do not drink, cook or wash with water from a private well that has been flooded as it can cause illness. Where floodwaters affect wells, use hand sanitizer for handwashing and bleach for cleaning and disinfecting surfaces. For information on flooding and your well, visit https://bit.ly/2zSyEr2

To help prevent the spread of COVID-19, wear cloth face coverings, keep six feet apart and wash hands frequently when sandbagging or helping friends and neighbors.

Obey all road closure signs and barricades and take alternative routes. Do not drive through standing water on roads or in parking lots. The average vehicle can be swept off the road in 12 inches of moving water and roads covered by water are prone to collapse. Attempting to drive through water may also stall your engine and result in irreparable damage. Remember, turn around, don’t drown.

Report flooding to local authorities immediately and contact the County Floodplain Manager at (406) 447-8375 regarding emergency floodplain permitting.

Additional information on flooding and flood preparedness:

Lewis and Clark County website at www.lccountymt.gov/des/flood-information.html

Lewis and Clark County Emergency Services Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/LewisandClarkCountyEmergency

Lewis and Clark County Government Facebook: www.facebook.com/LCCoGovernment

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Contact

Jeni Garcin, Communications and Community Outreach Coordinator, 447-8305, jgarcin@lccountymt.gov