LONGMONT, Colo. (CBS4)– Police in Longmont said they have enacted their 500-year flood plan. They also have made a Declaration of Emergency in city limits which includes a curfew from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m. Friday.
The flood waters started rushing from the St. Vrain River before sunrise Thursday.
“There are probably three or four spots that have a foot of water on them,” said Colorado State Trooper Jerry Sharp. “In essence we’re setting an island between ourselves and Lyons.”
Water escaping the dam in Lyons found it’s way to the St. Vrain River and pushed water 19 miles east to St. Vrain State Park.
“I can’t believe there’s so much rain here. We’ve never seen a drop of rain,” said camper Brian McCape.
The swollen river shut down campsites and forced tourists to pack up and head out.
“But if my wife lets me I’ll be headed east towards North Platte,” said camper Jack Rutherford.
People living in Longmont had their hands full with a situation many had never experienced.
“Crazy! I’ve never seen anything like it in 22 years,” said Longmont resident Mike James.
Water carrying debris and mud pushed its way through Longmont, crashing into bridges and rushing through parking lots and into retail shops like Best Buy.
“We have some windows that are about to break open pretty soon,” said business owner David Hayes. “I’m a little scared right now. I got a lot of valuables, got a life in your business. You hate to see it float away.”
Longmont city officials urged all residents to stay home and avoid river areas.
Evacuations were ordered to the following neighborhoods: The Creekside neighborhood, near Plateau Road and Hover St, which is near Left hand creek. The Longmont Estate Greens and Champion Greens neighborhood, near 9th Ave and Airport Road. The Valley neighborhood, near Hayden Ct and 9th Ave and the Golden Ponds neighborhood near the south edges of Allen Dr. and Hover St. These neighborhoods are near the St. Vrain River.
Also evacuated the Willow Creek neighborhood, the Schlagel neighborhood and the Grandview Meadows neighborhood. These neighborhoods are bordered by Nelson Road to the north, Quail Rd to the south, S. Fordham St to the east and Peck Dr. to the west.
Longmont officials said the drinking water is still safe. The drinking water supply, the Water Treatment Plant, is still operating properly but the Waste Water Treatment Plant has been closed. The closure will not impact water supply.
The City of Longmont is also informing Longmont Power & Communications customers that if they have been out of power for several hours, it’s likely LPC can’t access their equipment due to flooding. Sustained outages are likely to continue for these customers until water recedes and we can safely access equipment and safely make repairs. This is primarily occurring in Airport Road to the West, North of Nelson Road. and West of 53rd.
“This has got to be the largest storm that I can imagine in the state’s history,” Gov. John Hickenlooper said Friday morning.
Colorado Floods: How To Help
The recent floods are impacting families and communities throughout Colorado, so CBS4 has compiled a list of ways you can support the local communities impacted by the floods.