By Dan Fiorucci
Channel 2 News
5:27 PM AKDT, September 24, 2012
In the Kenai Peninsula Borough Monda night, floodwaters were still rising as people braced for the worst flooding in 6 years.
Late Monday afternoon, the river in Soldotna had reached flood stage (12 feet on that section of the Kenai) and was expected to keep rising until sometime Tuesday. Emergency Management officials say the river will crest at 12 feet-6 inches.
The problem is, the flood waters are not expected to recede to below flood stage until sometime Thursday. And even that forecast is uncertain due to rainstorms in the nearby mountains. They could keep the river above 12 feet in Soldotna, and other areas, beyond Thursday.
Further up river, in Cooper landing, the boat-launching parking lot was covered with several feet of water -- as was a nearby pedestrian bridge. Some homes along the river there experienced flooding of their basements.
Meanwhile, back in Soldotna, vacationers in the River's Edge RV Park were keeping a wary eye on the river. They were concerned that the rising waters might flood the park, and wash away the RV's -- most of which are unoccupied.
A few hundred feet from the park, home owners were concerned about flooding of their basements. Tonight emergency managers were warning people to clear propane tanks -- and other loose objects -- off of their property. The fear is that debris will be washed into the waters.
The floods here are expected to affect 14,000 people. Some of them are homeowners, some of them are drivers -- who will experience this flood through blocked roadways.
14,000 people is approximately one quarter of the 56,000 residents of this borough. So this is considered a significant flooding event.
Homeowners with wells are advised to boil their water for 2 minutes -- after removing sediments from it. There are worries that the waters could carry sickening germs. In the meantime, the worst of the situation should end sometime Tuesday. The hope is that the floods will begin slowly receding after that.
Contact Dan Fiorucci
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