South Sound recovering after record deluge

Monday’s heavy rainstorm dumped 5.17 inches of rain on Tacoma, the highest daily rainfall amount in 43 years, according to the National Weather Service.

Meanwhile, urban and stream flooding in Pierce County caused at estimated $300,000 in damage as a result of Monday’s heavy rains and forced closure of Chambers Creek Road near Charles Wright Academy in University Place.
The Peach Creek bridge near the academy was closed for an indefinite period after ground gave way near the bridge and caused structural damage estimated at $100,000. The bridge is located on Chambers Creek Road.

Steve Bailey, the county’s emergency management director, said stormwater caused localized flooding of roads, homes, businesses and apartment complexes.

He said the hardest hit areas were University Place, Parkland, Spanaway, Edgewood and Gig Harbor.

Despite heavy rain, Bailey said rivers in Pierce County remain below flood levels.

Bruce Wagner, road operations manager, said road crews worked Monday night putting out “Water over Roadway” signs, cleaning debris from storm drains and delivering sand bags to fire stations.

Crews continued monitoring stormwater levels on roadways and cleaning debris from roadways, culverts and drain basins Tuesday.

County officials provided these reminders for residents encountering emergency situations:

* Call 9-1-1 for life-threatening emergencies;

* Contact your local fire district for sandbags;

* Don’t drive through standing/rushing water;

* Clear debris from clogged stormwater grates; and

* Maintain a three-day emergency supply kit.

Pierce County Emergency Management can be reached 24 hours a day at 253/798-7470.

The National Weather Service is forecasting more rain for the area tonight and tomorrow, although not at Monday’s levels.