King County Executive Declares Pre-Emptive Emergency

Disasters and AccidentsFloods and FloodingSeattleHoward HansonFEMA

King County Executive Kurt Triplett wants to speed-up preparations for possible flooding in the Green River Valley this winter.

Triplett proclaimed a flood emergency Thursday.

He held a news conference Thursday with Councilmembers Julia Patterson and Dow Constantine to explain his concerns. Triplett signed his proclamation at the meeting.

The problem is the Howard Hanson Dam which was damaged during heavy rains last January.

If we get that much rain again County leaders say the Army Corps of Engineers will have to release water to keep levels below the damage and that could cause flooding in Auburn, Kent, Tukwila and Renton. FEMA predicts the flooding could cause 3-billion dollars in damage.

King County Councilwoman Julia Patterson says, "We so often think that we are able to control, but we are not in control of this situation. Mother Nature is in control."

King County Executive Kurt Triplett says, "To every business and every resident in the Green River Valley, I am saying you must prepare for this flood. You must make an emergency plan and you must buy flood insurance now before the rain starts."

Triplett hopes the proclamation will make it easier to get state and federal help and to work on strengthening the aging levies in the valley.

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