Recent weather forecasts include a potential
for significant rainfall in the Kootenai River basin over the next few days.
This may cause a rise in water level in Boundary County.
The current river level at Bonners Ferry is 1762.16. Should the predicted
rainfall occur, the Kootenai River in Boundary County could reach the 1764.1
foot elevation (flood stage) over the next few days. This is a forecast provided
to Boundary County and is weather dependant. This can change hourly when the
weather changes. The river water level is elevation from sea level. Depending
upon the duration of the rainfall, the river could continue to rise through
Friday. The flood stage level
does not mean there is a threat of water going over dikes/levees or any
Boundary County Commissioners passed an
emergency ordinance today restricting watercraft on the river. This is a
temporary restriction and designed to help ensure safety of the public and
personnel conducting work along the riverbanks and dike system, as well as help
reduce damage to our river banks.
Plans are in place for sandbagging low-lying
portions of the City of Bonners Ferry should it become necessary. The
Army Corp of Engineers is continuing to place rock on the north side dike/levee
in Bonners Ferry, as well as working with local officials to provide technical
County Emergency Management officials are
advising farmers and ranchers with property that could be affected by seepage or
high water tables to be aware that livestock and equipment might need to be
moved to higher ground and to plan accordingly.
Landowners who have experienced any losses or any type of damage during
the periods of high river levels are asked to report the damages to the Boundary
County Agricultural Extension Office (208) 267-3235.
Reports are voluntary and will be used to monitor overall conditions
within the county; they will not constitute a request for any type of
Boundary County Officials and Bonners Ferry
Officials met today with members from state and federal delegates, Army Corp of
Engineers, FEMA, National Weather Service (Spokane) Kootenai Tribe of Idaho, and
Idaho Homeland Security to discuss the overall impact of the water level and
damage to Boundary County. These meetings were helpful for everyone to hear the
needs and develop a plan.
Boundary County Emergency Management is also
looking at options for mosquito abatement due to predictions of high mosquito
populations as a result of the higher water levels.
Panhandle Health District has been involved in planning for mosquito
control. See the attached news
release from the health district for additional information.