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Tuesday, January 31, 2006 - Page updated at 12:00 AM


Wet-weather woes won't let up

Times Snohomish County Bureau

The weekend's wet winter weather carried into Monday, wreaking havoc along area rivers, roads and rail lines.

Despite showing some signs of improvement over the weekend, the Stillaguamish River rose again Monday, flooding a couple of outlying buildings near Oso, Snohomish County, according to the county's Department of Emergency Management.

A landslide last week blocked the river's north fork, creating the threat of flooding to some small, older homes in the rural Steelhead community east of Oso.

Interstate 90 over Snoqualmie Pass reopened Monday morning after a 16-hour closure of a 72-mile stretch between North Bend and Ellensburg.

The closures were caused by two avalanches on Sunday that followed nearly 40 inches of snowfall over the past four days.

Heavy rainfall in the area Monday added to the weight of the snow and made opening the highway difficult, according to a state Department of Transportation report.

Sounder commuter-rail service between Everett and Seattle was canceled again Monday because of a mudslide. The passenger trains will not run today either.

Another small mudslide early Monday afternoon blocked the westbound lane of Highway 202 between Redmond and Fall City. Traffic was detoured around the slide until the road reopened at 5:30 p.m.

King County activated its Flood Warning Center at 8:30 a.m. Monday to monitor minor flooding on the Tolt River. Heavy rainfall over the weekend in some portions of King County raised the Tolt to Phase II flood-warning stage.

Rains also caused flooding on area streets. Crews in Bothell on Monday were able to get traffic moving on one flooded main street by bringing in a pump.

In Snohomish County, part of South Lake Stevens Road flooded and was closed, as was a portion of Ash Way in Lynnwood.

The National Weather Service was predicting continued rain and wind for Seattle throughout most of the week.

Flood levels on the North Fork of the Stillaguamish near Oso were expected to decline slightly Monday night, but forecasters were debating whether to issue a new flood warning, given the impending rain.

Brian Alexander: 425-745-7845 or Seattle Times Eastside bureau reporter Peyton Whitely contributed to this story.

Copyright © 2006 The Seattle Times Company




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