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Flooding, landslides on North Coast

Highway flooded in Seaside, crews scrambling to cover slides
By Erick Bengel

The Daily Astorian

Published on February 9, 2017 8:48AM

Last changed on February 9, 2017 2:11PM

High water in Seaside on the golf course.

R.J. Marx/The Daily Astorian

High water in Seaside on the golf course.

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Stormy weather is causing landslides and disrupting traffic on the North Coast.

Beerman Creek has flooded U.S. Highway 101 in Seaside, prompting the Oregon Department of Transportation to close the highway this morning to all vehicles. It is now open to all vehicles.

Department crews are also clearing away several landslides, according to Mark Buffington, ODOT District 1 manager.

A landslide on U.S. Highway 103, in a woodsy area about 100 feet from Highway 26, has closed traffic at milepost 8.78. The slide caused trees to fall on power lines. Witnesses reported smoking and flames. The department doesn’t yet know the status of the incident and is waiting for the public utility district to shut off the power.

The biggest landslide the department is working on closed Oregon Highway 47 at milepost 2, just outside Clatskanie.

Another slide on Oregon Highway 47 at milepost 50, near Pittsburg, briefly closed the highway there. It has since reopened.

A slide on Oregon Highway 202 is blocking the road at milepost 22. ODOT has closed the road and the public utility district is heading there now to shut the power off. The trees are smoking there as well, Buffington said.

“Generally what happens is, when we get 3 1/2 inches of rain all at once, this is pretty much what we do, is we run around and we chase these slides,” Buffington said.

A coastal flood advisory will be in effect for the north Oregon and south Washington coasts today. The advisory will be in effect for minor tidal flow in low-lying coastal areas.

A flood warning is currently in effect for the Nehalem River near Foss until Saturday morning. The river is expected to crest at 19 feet, the National Weather Service said. Once the river rises above 18 feet, widespread flooding of low-lying areas will begin. The town of Nehalem likely will see street flooding later tonight.

Tides could reach close to 12 feet beginning at 11 a.m., the weather service said. Rivers draining the coastal range also will rise significantly, which will exacerbate the high tides.

Low-lying areas along Highway 101 and the lower reaches of coastal rivers may experience minor overflow. Seaside and Nehalem may see some of the most flooding, the weather service said.

High winds are also posing danger on the North Coast.



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