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Saturday, March 2, 2019

Shocking pictures show widespread flooding in California's wine country as thousands of homes and businesses face ruin by the heavy rain after two towns were turned into 'islands'

These shocking pictures show just how widespread the flooding in California's wine country was this week with thousands of homes and business facing ruin by the heavy rain.
Residents were told to leave the area and roads were closed after buildings in the popular tourist destination were flooded by water up to eight feet deep. Two towns - Guerneville and neighboring Monte Rio - became 'islands'. 
Images show people forced to kayak down flooded streets after days of heavy rain left some areas reachable only by boat after being cut off by the rain-swollen Russian River on Wednesday. 
The Sonoma County Sheriff's Office said on Wednesday morning: 'Guerneville is officially an island.' 
By Friday the evacuation orders were lifted and all roads into Guerneville and neighboring Monte Rio were opened - almost three days later. But residents returned to scenes of devastation and pictures from the scene show people coming to terms with the extensive damage. 
Mud and debris covers cars, homes and roads after 3,700 people were ordered to evacuate as waters reached up to eight feet deep.  
Jason Flint prepared for the flooding by putting his deli's valuable equipment on pallets and milk crates stacked several feet above the ground.
But it wasn't enough and when he returned to Guerneville Friday he found mud-covered refrigerators, display cases and food crates strewn about by 6-foot-high murky water.
'My entire deli is wiped out,' Flint said. 'It's crazy. It's too much to get my head around this.' 
A flooded neighborhood sits in waters from the overflowed Russian River in the town of Guerneville
A flooded neighborhood sits in waters from the overflowed Russian River in the town of Guerneville
The Russian River in Sonoma County crested at more than 46 feet Wednesday night, flooding about 2,000 buildings
The Russian River in Sonoma County crested at more than 46 feet Wednesday night, flooding about 2,000 buildings
Residents returned to scenes of devastation and pictures from the scene show people kayaking down roads 
Residents returned to scenes of devastation and pictures from the scene show people kayaking down roads 
Evacuation orders were lifted and all roads into Guerneville and neighboring Monte Rio were opened Friday
Evacuation orders were lifted and all roads into Guerneville and neighboring Monte Rio were opened Friday
Officials warned people to stay away from the area unless they have necessary business
Officials warned people to stay away from the area unless they have necessary business
Along the main road in Guerneville, business owners inspected the damage caused by floodwaters that rose about 46 feet Wednesday night, the river's highest level in 24 years.
Chris Reid, a manager of True Value Hardware, said they were able to salvage cash registers, computers, chain saws and other expensive equipment by putting them on the second floor of the two-story building.
But on the ground level, all the shelves were covered in chest-high mud. He and employees washed down rubber boots, brooms, shovels, buckets and other salvaged cleaning supplies and brought them to the sidewalk to sell at a discounted rate.
Locals are accustomed to the river flooding in rainy weather, but not like this, he said.
'The store has gone through all the floods but this is a lot more than we expected,' Reid said.
Flint said he knew flooding was inevitable when he opened his deli but he couldn't afford to pay $2,000 per month for flood insurance.
'I've been here 17 years and I've never seen the river that high. I pray the worst of it is over,' he said, adding that he plans to rebuild his business.
This satellite image shows Guerneville before the Russian River flood. The storm-swollen river is slowly receding after causing extensive flooding, but more rainfall is expected Friday night and Saturday
This satellite image shows Guerneville before the Russian River flood. The storm-swollen river is slowly receding after causing extensive flooding, but more rainfall is expected Friday night and Saturday
This satellite image from Thursday shows  Guerneville after the flood. Authorities have reopened the roads into two towns cut off for days by a rain-swollen river and residents and work crews have started cleaning up the muck left behind
This satellite image from Thursday shows Guerneville after the flood. Authorities have reopened the roads into two towns cut off for days by a rain-swollen river and residents and work crews have started cleaning up the muck left behind
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Farmhand Deli co-owner Jason Flint surveys the damage inside his restaurant along River Road as flood waters from the Russian River continue to recede in Guerneville, California on Friday
Farmhand Deli co-owner Jason Flint surveys the damage inside his restaurant along River Road as flood waters from the Russian River continue to recede in Guerneville, California on Friday
Mick McGuinn, right, and his son Michael McGuinn help clean up Mick's girlfriend's store Bonnie Sew Good in Guerneville
Mick McGuinn, right, and his son Michael McGuinn help clean up Mick's girlfriend's store Bonnie Sew Good in Guerneville
True Value hardware store manager Chris Reid pauses while surveying damage to his store
True Value hardware store manager Chris Reid pauses while surveying damage to his store
Sonoma County spokesman Hannah Euser said even though evacuation orders were lifted for Guerneville and Monte Rio, residents were encouraged to wait to enter their homes until they are inspected. Damage assessment crews planned to mark green, yellow and red tags to indicate whether they are safe for re-entry.
'We have a lot of buildings that have taken in water and we will be inspecting them to determine if they are safe,' she said.
Euser said crews were still clearing trees, tires and even propane tanks from the streets while workers with Pacific Gas and Electric checked power lines. Officials warned people to stay away from the area unless they have necessary business.
Light rain was forecast for Friday night in the area and Euser said emergency personnel would remain working through the weekend. She said there were continuing concerns for mudslides in areas scarred by wildfires two years ago.
'We are not completely out of the woods here,' said Assemblyman Jim Wood, who represents the area in the state Legislature.
Another wet system carrying the aptly named 'atmospheric river' is in the forecast next week, though forecasters say it's expected to affect central California.
Russian River overflows flooding Northern Californian towns
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A coating of mud is left on the inside of a car that was underwater after days of heavy rain left towns reachable only by boat
A coating of mud is left on the inside of a car that was underwater after days of heavy rain left towns reachable only by boat
A Ford Mustang is covered in debris after being underwater during the flood after 3,700 people were ordered to evacuate
A Ford Mustang is covered in debris after being underwater during the flood after 3,700 people were ordered to evacuate
Scott Heemstra takes Veronica Burdette out of the flood zone as floodwaters rise along Mill Street in Guerneville
Scott Heemstra takes Veronica Burdette out of the flood zone as floodwaters rise along Mill Street in Guerneville
A log rests at a destroyed shop along River Road as flood waters from the Russian River continue to recede in Guerneville
A log rests at a destroyed shop along River Road as flood waters from the Russian River continue to recede in Guerneville
Katie Horton reacts while cleaning out her flooded home in Guerneville with another wet system carrying the aptly named 'atmospheric river' forecast next week, though forecasters say it's expected to affect central California
Katie Horton reacts while cleaning out her flooded home in Guerneville with another wet system carrying the aptly named 'atmospheric river' forecast next week, though forecasters say it's expected to affect central California
Mishayla Horton cleans out her flooded home in Guerneville as residents were encouraged to wait to enter their homes until they are inspected
Mishayla Horton cleans out her flooded home in Guerneville as residents were encouraged to wait to enter their homes until they are inspected
Bonnie Plevney checks the waterline in her flooded shop Bonnie Sew Good. Crews were still clearing trees, tires and even propane tanks from the streets while workers with Pacific Gas and Electric checked power lines
Bonnie Plevney checks the waterline in her flooded shop Bonnie Sew Good. Crews were still clearing trees, tires and even propane tanks from the streets while workers with Pacific Gas and Electric checked power lines
Resident Dustin Pasquin-Theders reaches for an arrow that marks the waterline on a flooded home in Guerneville
Resident Dustin Pasquin-Theders reaches for an arrow that marks the waterline on a flooded home in Guerneville

No one was injured or killed and the river receded below the 32-foot flood level. However, more than 200 miles north, a man drowned while trying to reach his Humboldt County home by walking through about 5 feet of water.
Benito Nunez-Rodriguez, 35, of Ferndale was trying to walk from his job at a dairy farm to his home Wednesday evening when he was carried away by the fast-moving current, said Samantha Karges, a spokeswoman with the Humboldt County Sheriff's Office.
Co-workers had tried to encourage Nunez-Rodriguez to spend the night with them rather than cross the flood waters, but he wanted to get home, Joseph Alexandre, manager of Alexandre Family Farm, said Friday.
'We're all pretty shaken up about what happened and thinking what could we have done differently,' Alexandre said. 

1 comment:

  1. Sadly most of the people will never belive this was an engineered event and
    will rebuild the church and pray harder.
    califonia is a good place to be from, Far From. It is only the start of much worse to come. I wish the unknowing well.
    see, and Share, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8bOJiTskr6w

    ReplyDelete