Observation by Garden Cleveland and Carl Snyder with help from Ida Norton: After significant rain and high water from the Kobuk River the Native Village of Kobuk is now flooded. Water in some parts of town are to the door steps of homes. Business such as Kobuk City Office, NANA Office, Kobuk Traditional Council Offices, and the US Post Offices are closed due to the flood. The flood also interrupts the daily flights that arrive that brings mail and freight, such as groceries and general merchandise are limited due to the flood. The flight at the moment are only limited to passengers. No mail, groceries, and general merchandise are coming in during this flood. The flight agent for Bering Air stated that during the flood, he meets the plane with a boat to transport passengers to their destination.
Rick Thoman provided the following comment: Heavy rains fell across much of western Alaska in July, including all of the Kobuk River basin. While the last week of the month was very wet, significant rains earlier in the month helped saturate the ground and contributed to the flooding. The very wet month was the result of a stable weather pattern, warm high pressure anchored over Siberia and western Canada, and in between unusually persistent low pressure over the northern Bering and southern Chukchi Seas. This resulted in a series of storms and weather fronts impacting the region. From available rainfall measurements, July precipitation was generally two to four times normal in the Kobuk basin.
Ted Smith writes:These pictures have been sent to the SEOC, Claude Denver is aware of the situation.
Oxcenia O'Domin writes: Almost nine out of ten Alaska Native villages experience flooding and/or erosion. Floods in Alaska commonly result from coastal storm surge, ice jams in rivers, high precipitation events, or rapid thawing of winter snow and ice. Standing flood waters can spread infectious diseases, contain chemical hazards, and cause injuries. Developing a sheltering plan and an evacuation plan for yourself, your family, and others in your household is suggested. Review your plans and make sure that everyone understands them. If you haven’t already done so, put together an emergency supply kit.
During a flood watch or warning, the CDC recommends:
• Gather emergency supplies.
• Listen to your local radio or television station for updates.
• Fill bathtubs, sinks, gallon jars, or plastic soda bottles so that you will have a supply of clean water.
o Sanitize sinks/tubs first by cleaning them using diluted household laundry bleach. Then rinse and fill with clean water.
• Bring in outdoor possessions or tie them down securely.
• If you need to evacuate, turn off all utilities at the main power switch and close the main gas valve.
After Flooding Has Occurred
• Do not drink flood water, or use it to wash dishes, brush teeth, or wash/prepare food. Drink clean, safe water.
• If you evacuated: return to your home only after local authorities have said it is safe to do so.
• Do your best to dry any areas of your home that may be water damaged. Having moist areas in your home can lead to mold. Secondarily, ventilate your home as much as possible by opening windows, using your HVAC system, using bathroom fans and your range hood if you have one.
• Listen to water advisories from local authorities to find out if your water is safe for drinking and bathing.
o During a water advisory, use only bottled, boiled, or treated water for drinking, cooking, etc.
• Avoid driving through flooded areas and standing water. As little as six inches of water can cause you to lose control of your vehicle.
• Prevent carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. Use generators and pressure washers outside, at least 20 feet from any doors, windows and vents.
For more information:
See also attached by ANTHC: guidance document on preparing a home emergency kit, and for children, a Molly of Denali emergency preparation work book.