Summer thunderstorm season is upon us here in Okanogan County. Residents living in, adjacent to, or downstream from, burned areas should remain aware that there is an increased risk for flooding and erosion. Flood risk remains elevated for up to five years after a wildfire.
Use these links to find weather information for your area:
NWS Spokane homepage http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/otx/
NWS Spokane weekly weather briefings posted by Monday afternoon: https://www.youtube.com/user/nwsspokane
NWS Spokane Facebook https://www.facebook.com/NWSSpokane
NWS Spokane Twitter https://twitter.com/NWSSpokane
Map based hazards viewer (can look at precip amounts under "Mesowest Surface Observations" drop down menu) http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/map/?wfo=otx
Residents are encouraged to take action NOW to protect themselves and their families. The following tips can help.
Pay attention to the weather. Monitor weather forecasts and flood warnings on NOAA Weather Radio or local media.
If severe weather is forecast, the most appropriate action for your family may be to evacuate. Make an evacuation kit and have a plan.
Clean out draws and drainages around your home. This includes brush and other debris that could keep water from flowing into a culvert or drain.
Consider purchasing flood insurance. Even areas that are not normally prone to flooding can flood after a wildfire. FEMA lists the average flood claim in 2010 as $28,000.
Secure outdoor items or store them inside. This includes barbeques, picnic tables, and outdoor furniture.