Fall City folks manage high water

After flood waters began receding Tuesday evening, families at the Fall City Campground who had left to stay dry began moving back toward the campground. Several families were camped on the road just outside of the park.

"We've been out here since [the flood came]," said Ken Meadors. "We got out on Sunday morning. We didn't have to deal with the flood."

Meadors' family had camped in several different places along that road with their motor home, as well as places in town to avoid rising waters.

"It kept chasing us out of here. We're lucky we got to bring our houses with us," he said.

Tony Unruh's recreational vehicle did get wet because he couldn't get it started in time to move it away from the campground. He'll have to do some repairs and replace some carpets, he said.

"[The campground] looks like a shot of a war zone from World War I," Unruh said.

On the other side of the river, Jim Ingildsen watched as two feet of water rose around his property and "washed up" two trucks and three dressers, though it did not go in his house. He did open his house to his neighbor, whose house was flooded.

"It was a torrential onslaught of water," said Ingildsen. "His house is trashed."

Although located right along the Snoqualmie and Raging rivers, much of downtown Fall City was not directly affected by recent flooding. However, areas that were flooded were hit hard.

"There's some damage along state Route 202 from Fall City to Snoqualmie," said Fall City Fire Chief Chris Connor on Wednesday, Nov. 8. "There are some areas we're still not able to access because there's still water there."

In one case, the fire department worked with King County Sheriff's Office to rescue two horses that had been caught in flood waters for a couple of days. One of the horses died as a result of the high waters. The department has not performed any rescues of people.

"The water this time appeared to them to be worse than it was in 1990," said Connor. "A lot of the same places where we had problems in 1990 are going to have problems this time."

Most of the homes have flood insurance, so owners are directed through King County to get assistance through their insurance companies, he said. The department had not found any collapsed structures in Fall City. One form of prevention that the city follows closely is maintaining a flood call list. When city officials are aware of probable flooding, the fire department calls each of about 80 people on the list to give warning.

"It makes those people aware there's something out there and some take action," said Connor. "It prevents us from having to go do things on an emergency basis."

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