Evacuations are being urged in some areas as the Nisqually River is expected to rise substantially following a decision by Tacoma Power to increase the flow from the LaGrande Dam in light of continued heavy rainfall.
“Residents of the Nisqually Pines advised to be ready to evacuate as short notice if needed, and residents of Nisqually Delta, especially east of Durgin and Nisqually Cutoff urged to evacuate by 1600,” a Thurston County Alert notice said Thursday morning.
Tacoma Power was expected to increase the flow from the dam to 17,000 cubic feet per second by 1 p.m. Thursday, according to a notice issued by Thurston County Emergency Management, prompting the call for residents around Nisqually Cut Off Road SE to evacuate the area by 4 p.m.
“The emergency coordination center are at a level 2 evacuation right now and they’re working with the Red Cross to find shelter options. We don’t know what those shelter options are right now, but once we do they’ll be provided,” said Thurston County spokesperson Bryan Dominique.
The Nisqually River is currently at minor flood stage at 10.19 feet. The notices for evacuation were posted around 9:30 a.m. Thursday.
Residents of the Nisqually Pines are advised to be ready to be read to evacuate on short notice if needed.
A flood warning has been issued for the Nisqually River at McKenna by the National Weather Service. The warning went into effect Thursday morning and is currently set to last through Saturday afternoon.
This story will be updated with more information as it becomes available.