Falling Rain And Melting Snow Forces N. Utah Homeowners To Pump Water

Jan 10, 2017

Cache Valley homeowner Lisa Wood and her family spent Monday shoveling snow and removing buckets of water after falling rain and melting snow caused flooding.
Credit Lisa Wood

Avalanche danger is high for the mountains of Northern Utah, including the Wasatch Range, The Bear River Range and the mountains of Southern Idaho. Warnings have also been issued for the Western Uintas and the Manti-Skyline Plateau.

The Utah Avalanche Center reports heavy snowfall and strong winds, combined with rain on snow at the lower elevations, is creating widespread dangerous avalanche conditions.

This latest storm brought rain to the valley, combined with large amounts of snow and the frozen ground, forcing water to flood homes. Residents report that most of the flooding has been inconvenient with minor damage to property.

When Wendy Foster heard temperatures in Northern Utah were going to rise and rain was going to fall she and her husband Gary took the advice of Cache County officials to prepare for flooding at their Providence home. Because they had experienced flooding on the east side of their home two weeks earlier they placed sandbags there to prevent possible damage to their home. They weren’t prepared for the flow of water from melting snow on the homes west side.

“We have had some flooding,” says Foster. “We are not sure if it was a gutter issue or from where we had piled up the snow from shoveling up all of that snow.”

The Fosters tried to get supplies like rain gutters and sand bags from area home improvement stores, but everything was gone. So, they ended up spending Monday at home suctioning ten gallons of water from carpet.

“We have the carpet pulled up and the pad is out,” says Foster. “We have fans going so I think we will be ok until we can get back home.”

Foster spoke with me while traveling to work Tuesday morning.

“I’m headed off to work and hoping for the best,” she says.

Lisa Wood and her husband own a local computer store, Computerwise, which they closed for the day on Monday after the rain combined with melting snow, coming from two stories above, to cause their basement stairwell to fill with water.

“We were able to just stay right on top of it, so we don’t have a lot of damage,” says Wood. “My husband kept saying ‘oh-my-gosh, I just can’t believe we have this much water. This is amazing’! It just didn’t feel like it would ever stop and then when it started to thunder and lightning we were like, wow”.

Cache County Sheriff Deputy Matt Bilodeau spent Monday responding to calls from homeowners.

“But when I would show up it was very minor, they had it under control,” says Bilodeau. “They maybe needed to stay home and watch their sump pump or had a sump pump in the window well they needed to watch so they didn’t go to work. I haven’t heard of any major water damage.”

Sheriff's Department officers assisted cities in the county by providing more than four thousand bags to city officials who then filled them with sand and offered the sandbags to residents.

Monday's storm did force a truck to plow into the side of Logan Canyon that led to a two hour closure. There were also two auto accidents North of Logan after roads became icy and rain water puddled on the roadways.