Experts Call for More Flooding this Week, Most of June

By: Tim Ciesco Email
By: Tim Ciesco Email

Several flood advisories have been issued across Western Colorado as experts say heavy run-off is causing the Colorado River to rise. They say Grand Valley residents shouldn't expect those levels to go down anytime soon.

It's beginning to feel a lot like summer around the Grand Valley. But go up to the Grand Mesa and it's a different story.

"In the Upper Colorado region we're still seeing snowpack sitting about one-hundred and twenty percent of normal for this time of year," said Jeff Colton, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

With warm temperatures this week, weather experts say there's only one place all that run-off can go -- the Colorado River.

"It looks like the river flooding will continue through late June," said Colton.

A week after seeing minor flooding across Western Colorado, experts say we can expect to see more. But this time the rivers will be higher.

"The rivers are still going to remain above bank full," said Colton. "That means there will be flooding on the edges of rivers and that's a forecast that will continue next week."

Experts say they expect the rivers to peak Wednesday at 6:00am, which emergency officials say could bode problems for people in several areas. They say they will continue to monitor levels along the river all week, but they'll be specifically interested in Collbran, the Plateau Creek area, Cameo, and areas near the Utah / Colorado border.

One westbound lane of I-70 has already been closed near Loma as water rises dangerously close to the bridge there.

Officials say it is unlikely they will have to evacuate anyone near the town of Collbran, but say potential creek flooding could cause road closures.

"It's going to be a similar pattern for the next couple of days," said Colton. "The rivers will recede during the daytime and then come back up overnight and into the early morning hours each day."

Emergency officials say that's why they're asking residents to stay alert and stay off of the river for the next few weeks.

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