IE 11 Not Supported

For optimal browsing, we recommend Chrome, Firefox or Safari browsers.

Red Cross Opens Evacuation Center Amid Flooding in Nevada

The Eureka County Sheriff's Office reported water over the southbound lane of State Route 278 on Wednesday afternoon. Emergency officials put out an evacuation warning as water began to encroach into neighborhoods.

flooded road
(TNS) - The American Red Cross of Northern Nevada opened an evacuation center in Eureka on Wednesday, while in Elko County cooler temperatures helped keep snowmelt in check.

The Eureka County Sheriff's Office reported water over the southbound lane of State Route 278 on Wednesday afternoon. Emergency officials put out an evacuation warning Tuesday as water began to encroach into residential neighborhoods.

The evacuation center was set up in the Old Elementary school, 190 Adams Road. Red Cross volunteers will staff the shelter and make food and comfort kits available. In addition, information about the status of the flood and evacuation orders will be provided at the shelter.

"At our center, residents have a safe and secure place to gather, have a bite to eat, rest, and stay informed regarding area flooding," stated Mary Powell, executive director for the American Red Cross of Northern Nevada. "We will keep the shelter open as long as our services are needed."

In Elko County, most of the roads that have been affected are in the Ryndon, Osino and Last Chance areas.

City of Elko Fire Chief James Johnston has been monitoring the Humboldt River level at Osino, where any surges will happen before it reaches Elko. He said Wednesday the water was at 2.78 feet.

Flood mitigation measures will be established if the level reaches 5.5 feet. Residential flooding can begin at the 6-foot level. The river reached 10.5 feet during the February 2017 flood that damaged dozens of homes on the south side of town.

"We're pretty happy with where we're at right now," Johnston said Wednesday afternoon.

But multiple storms are expected to deliver more precipitation beginning this weekend.

"A persistent unsettled upper pattern is to bring mostly isolated to scattered valley rain and mountain snow Sunday," stated National Weather Service forecasters. "A stronger push of valley rain/snow and mountain snow is indicated for Monday and yet another system looks to move in during the Tuesday time frame."

Temperatures will remain cooler than average, however.

A flood advisory issued across northern Nevada ended earlier than expected Wednesday, but southern Eureka County remains under a flood warning until 11 a.m. Friday.

Elko County's emergency management officer, Lee Cabaniss, told county commissioners on Wednesday that the county provided 15,000 sandbags to various locations throughout Elko County because of potential flooding and "more are on order."

He said "dirt roads are bad" in the county, and the county road department is working every day "but it is a big county with lots of road miles."

Elko County hasn't had any infrastructure damage from flooding, Cabaniss said. On Thursday a committee will begin initial assessments of any damage as the first step toward potential relief funds from the federal government.

The county could qualify because Gov. Joe Lombardo has declared an emergency that includes Elko.

Cabaniss said the county may want to consider declaring its own emergency, and Elko County Manager Amanda Osborne said there could be a special meeting to do so.

She also said that between the road work after the massive recent snow accumulations and now the water, the road department's budget is being eaten away and is "not looking too good."

©2023 Elko Daily Free Press, Nev. Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.