BELLINGHAM, Washington (AP) – As floods recede in parts of Washington state, damage assessments are starting and Gov. Jay Inslee promises he will actively seek federal money.
During a visit to Watcom County on Wednesday, the governor said about 500 homes were hit by the storms.
Inslee said he spoke to the mayors of Everson and Sumas and was amazed at the destruction he saw, according to The Bellingham Herald.
“I was told that in some places they reached record levels of flooding,” he said.
Inslee has scheduled a press conference for Thursday afternoon, likely to discuss flooding issues. He said Wednesday that damage data would be collected as part of a federal aid application.
“They have some of our teachers and educators going from house to house to get a damage assessment,” he said.
Laura Anker, manager of the Cherry Street Market store in Sumas, said Thursday that they are in full cleanup mode.
“It’s not great, but we’re holding on there,” she said.
The Red Cross said Thursday that it operates three shelters in western Washington for alleged residents displaced by the flood.
In British Columbia, Canada, the federal government dispatched military personnel to aid in floods and landslides that destroyed parts of several major highways. Vancouver, British Columbia has been cut off from the hinterland by a road.
The mayor of Abbotsford, British Columbia, said he would speak with Inslee later Thursday to discuss severe flooding on the Canadian side of the border, at least in part caused by swollen rivers in the United States.
Transportation officials in Washington’s Olympic Peninsula were also assessing conditions and clearing debris from roads.
The Pacific Northwest has been hit by days of continuous rain and wind that only died down earlier this week.
Bellingham received more rainfall from Saturday to Monday – about 5.57 inches (14.14 cm) – than usual throughout November, according to the National Weather Service. The normal monthly rainfall in November is 5.2 inches (13.2 centimeters), according to the Meteorological Agency.