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Kirkland drivers use caution, part of Totem Lake Blvd still closed | Update

The southbound lanes of Totem Lake Boulevard from south of 120th Avenue Northeast to north of Northeast 124th Street are closed due to water over the roadway. This photo was taken in 2010, when the same area was closed due to standing water. - File photo
The southbound lanes of Totem Lake Boulevard from south of 120th Avenue Northeast to north of Northeast 124th Street are closed due to water over the roadway. This photo was taken in 2010, when the same area was closed due to standing water.
— image credit: File photo

The southbound lane of Totem Lake Boulevard from south of 120th Ave. N.E. to north of N.E. 124th St. remains closed due to standing water over the roadway. The primary cause of the flooding is due to overflow from a privately owned detention pond adjacent to Totem Lake Boulevard.

City crews are on site to monitor water levels and to clear culverts in the surrounding area.  Drivers are encouraged to use caution.  To report severe flooding or road hazards in Kirkland city limits, call the Public Works Maintenance line at 425-587-3900 or email publicworks@kirklandwa.gov.  Please provide as much detail as possible about the location and impacts of flooding.

In 2011 the City conducted a detailed survey of the Totem Lake drainage system and located stream barriers where accumulation of sediment, invasive vegetation, and beaver dams were impacting the flow of water leaving the Lake.  To reduce flooding, barriers were removed between I-405 and Totem Lake.

The City also made significant progress towards reducing the severity and duration of seasonal flooding during the winter months through the use of temporary emergency pumping operations during the heavy rainfall events.  These improvements showed significant results when, after over 8 inches of rain fell during three significant storm events (November 2011 through April 2012) and no road closures were needed because of flooding.  Even with the most recent storm, additional capacity remained in the Lake to hold storm water.

The current flooding conditions caused by the private property will be addressed in 2013 when the City will further increase Totem Lake’s capacity to accommodate run off from the property by replacing a small diameter culvert.

For flood preparedness and response information, visit www.takewinterbystorm.org.

Storm safety tips:

Heavy rainfall can cause trees to fall and possible power outages. As a reminder, if you come across a downed power line, stay as far away from it as you can and call Puget Sound Energy at 1-888-225-5773. Assume it is live. Never touch a downed power line or anything near it. In addition, do not drive over downed power lines.

Should a power line fall on your car when you’re driving, stay in the car until help arrives. If a person or pet comes in contact with a power line, stay clear and call 911 immediately. Do not touch the victim or the wire.

If there’s a power outage, remember to use alternative heat sources safely and wisely. Follow manufacturers’ instructions. Adequately vent fueled space heaters (e.g., kerosene, propane, alcohol) to avoid fatal carbon monoxide gas buildup. Also, do not use outdoor grills or camp stoves indoors as they may cause carbon monoxide poisoning. To report a power outage, call Puget Sound Energy at 1-888-225-5773.

Additional tips:

• Call 9-1-1 only for life-threatening emergencies.

• Do not walk or wade in flooded areas.

• Do not attempt to drive through standing water as your vehicle may stall.

• Watch for “Street Closed” signs. They are placed by crews for your safety.

• Listen to your radio or television for storm forecasts and other information.

• If you are caught in your building by rapidly rising waters, call 911 for help. Then move to a higher floor or to the roof. Take warm, weatherproof clothing, a flashlight, a cell phone, and a portable radio.

• Check on your disaster preparedness kit to ensure it contains food, light sticks, water, flashlights, a battery-powered radio and a wind-up clock.

• Be a good neighbor. Find out if your neighbor needs any assistance with clearing storm drains or with any additional tasks.

 


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