Tacoma declares state of emergency

The U.S Army Corps of Engineers has predicted the Puyallup River may overflow its banks early Thursday morning. As a result of this prediction, Tacoma’s Mayor Bill Baarsma and City Manager Eric Anderson issued a proclamation that the City of Tacoma is in a state of civil emergency.

The declaration was made based on flooding risks to the City’s Central Wastewater Treatment Plant, which could pose a risk to public health.

The City’s Emergency Operations Center opened at 6 p.m. tonight and will remain open for the duration of the emergency.

The City’s surface water crews have switched to a 24-hour work schedule to attempt to keep the more than 22,000 public storm drains clean in Tacoma. Drains near street corners and in low areas of streets and parking lots are the main concern. Drivers navigating Tacoma’s rain-logged streets or in areas that are prone to slides, such as Schuster Parkway and Marine View Drive, are encouraged to drive with caution. Remember that it is not safe to walk or drive through flooded areas.