Damage Assessments Underway in Colorado Springs

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Damage assessments are underway in Colorado Springs as heavy rains continue to move through the Pikes Peak region and throughout the Front Range. Officials are urging residents to remain aware of weather conditions as rain is predicted throughout the weekend. 

Director of Emergency Management Bret Waters says the city and regional partners have been preparing for these kinds of events for some time now, and it’s important to stay prepared.

As we move further into the forecast, again, we do have possible rainfall in the foreseeable future.  As we study flooding events historically, this is a very dangerous time, because the ground is saturated.  If we do get more extensive rainfall, it could be treacherous.  And so we want to make sure, again, individuals and families are prepared.

Chief of Staff Laura Neumann says post-Waldo Canyon fire mitigation efforts are working.

The sediment debris ponds that we developed in response to the Waldo Canyon Fire did serve their purpose.  They are filled, all of them, with debris, but they did serve their purpose that they were intended.  All of our bridges particularly around Cheyenne Creek are currently being inspected by our engineering team. 

But, the Coalition for the Upper South Platte’s Theresa Springer said last night the rain is simply too much too soon.

It is very saturated up there.  You walk, you’re sinking to your ankles in the mud.  I don’t have a lot of high expectations for how well this burn scar is going to handle this heavy rain.  So, we need to really just be prepared to start over from scratch.

Waters says the city’s Emergency Operation Center has been open around the clock since the start of the rain event, and Colorado Springs Fire Chief Chris Riley says they’re keeping an eye on the weather.

We’re all very well aware that this situation could possibly get worse.  We’re obviously hoping it will not get worse.  We have a dedicated team staying vigilant as to any new developments.  Please understand that this is a dynamic and evolving incident.

Riley says from Wednesday until Friday morning they’ve conducted three rescues.  Officials say Thursday morning’s fatality remains the only related death in the city.

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