Friday, September 13, 2013

Fatal flooding in Colorado worsens; entire town evacuated

Chicago Tribune: Authorities have ordered all residents of the town of Lyons, located north of Boulder, to leave this morning as deadly flooding worsened overnight as record rains continued in central Colorado. The Boulder County Sheriff’s Office said officials planned to evacuate the town of about 2,000 around daybreak, according to KDVR in Denver. The Colorado National Guard has been called into to help.

The flooding has killed at least three people already, toppling buildings and stranding drivers, worsened overnight as record rains pounded the state, forcing thousands more residents to flee to higher ground, officials said.

The unusual late-summer downpours drenched Colorado's biggest urban centers, stretching 130 miles along the eastern slopes of the Rockies from Fort Collins near the Wyoming border south through Boulder, Denver and Colorado Springs.

In Boulder, the rainfall record for September set in 1940 was shattered, officials said, unleashing surging floodwaters in Boulder Canyon above the city that triggered the evacuation of some 4,000 residents late on Thursday.

"There's so much water coming out of the canyon, it has to go somewhere, and unfortunately it's coming into the city," said Ashlee Herring, spokeswoman for the Boulder office of Emergency Management....

A lower level at Boulder Creek, shot by Susan, Wikimedia Commons via Flickr, under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license

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