Press Release – Ice jams and mountain runoff have caused flooding in several parts of the state and have residents, first responders, Smoke Busters, National Guard units and state personnel taking protective measures to stay ahead of the rising waters.
The Bighorn River in Worland rose to flood levels and caused the evacuation of 102 homes. Heavy snowfall followed by warmer temperatures led to the flooding and ice jamming. Approximately 300 residents showed their community spirit and joined the sandbagging efforts and filled approximately 25,000 sandbags to rein in the rising waters. Two National Guard Rapid Action Teams of approximately 20 troops each have been deployed to the area. One additional Rapid Action Team will be deployed today to Worland.
In Hudson, a crew of 12 Department of Corrections/Forestry Division Smoke Busters filled more than 1,100 sandbags to add to the existing stock of sandbags. Responders are focusing on protecting the water treatment plant on River Road.
The state has other resources arriving to assist in the flood fighting efforts. Army Corps of Engineers personnel will be arriving in state today to provide technical assistance to state and local officials.
The Wyoming Department of Transportation has been providing resource assistance to the flood fighting efforts and has contributed greatly to the effort. The Wyoming Chapter of the American Red Cross has provided sheltering and mass care needs to the affected areas.
Gov. Matt Mead issued an Executive Order Friday, Feb. 10, declaring a state of emergency in response to severe weather and flood conditions across Wyoming. Health and safety are paramount considerations. The Order directs the Office of Homeland Security and the Wyoming National Guard to take appropriate action.