Rainfall is approaching 11 inches over Curry County since Friday, forcing the Chetco and Winchuck rivers to crest their banks, flooding homes, creating landslides, toppling trees and forcing road closures.
Both the Chetco and Winchuck River roads in South County have flooded onto county roads in spots, according to County Emergency Coordinator Jeremy Dumire, and Winchuck River Road is closed so crews can clear at least one landslide about 4.5 miles upriver.
Gardner Ridge at Hazel Camp is closed to all but local traffic and Hunter Creek Road is flooded and water is expected to rise by 3 p.m. with the arrival of another high tide.
People are advised to stay home, and if they must leave and encounter flooded areas, turn around. Many people drown in their cars while trying to cross flooded areas that are deeper than they appear to be, Dumire said.
Over the border in California, the Smith River continues to rise — it has topped 30 feet at Dr. Fine Bridge, three feet past the “action stage” for flooding — and could top 100 cubic feet per second, according to the National Weather Service.
Flooding was exacerbated by a high tide of 6.8 feet at 1:50 a.m. Monday resulting in water from the Chetco River flooding into At River’s Edge RV Park on South Bank Chetco River Road. Management there is asking that only residents come down to the area, as there are still large pools of standing water and the river has only subsided about a foot or two.
Few residents relocated their RVs, and all were safe Monday morning.
Trees were down throughout the county, a major landslide occurred on Langlois Mountain Road and road crews were out in force addressing problems. Winchuck River Road was blocked with fallen trees, road crews were working on them Monday morning while rocks and mud were crossing the road at another point. Hunter Creek Road near the Oregon State Patrol offices was flooded with more than a foot of water Monday morning.
The storm is forecast to continue through today and, as dramatically as it started, taper off to mostly sunny skies Tuesday, with a 20 percent chance of rain showers. A 10 percent chance of rain is forecast for Wednesday, increasing to an 80 percent chance on Thursday and partly cloudy skies Friday.