Homes near Carnation flooded after beaver dam breaks

Homes near Carnation flooded after beaver dam breaks

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by KING 5 News

kgw.com

Posted on November 6, 2012 at 10:12 AM

A beaver dam gave way Monday, sending water flowing into homes and onto roads north of Carnation, said a King County Emergency Management spokesperson.

Water and mud surrounded several buildings and filled up fields in the area of State Route 203 and NE 124th Street. 

No one was hurt.

King County was quick to point out that what happened is a natural occurrence. But late Monday afternoon, the county said the dam had been modified after a rush of water came down earlier this year.

The dam was holding back a pond. King County's Department of Natural Resources says the pond was 28 acres. Residents say it was almost double that. 

Bob Siko’s home was hit by a four-foot wall of water.

“Things could've been worse. There's enough water here it could've knocked my house off the foundation,” he said.

Siko was at work and his four kids were at school when the dam broke. For that he is thankful.

“With something like this, there's no way of knowing when the water's gonna come down. It could happen on a day like today. The kids could've been in the back yard,” he said.

Just across the street is the Pickering family barn. Inside, were four little pigs huffing and puffing to keep their snouts above water.

Some strangers saw the pigs swimming and helped family friend Jessie Strandlund move them to higher ground:

“That's the biggest thing, that no one was here and we got the pigs safe, got the people safe,” she said.

Overall, the damage is relatively minor.
  
The river of water created log jams that actually protected the properties, and silt acted as natural sandbags around the doors, keeping all but an inch or two of water outside the house.

And in this community that's seen more than its share of wind and water damage over the years, neighbors from all over are coming together like family.

“They're from the valley out here, and so is my family, so we'll do whatever we can to help,” said neighbor Ian Forgy.

While the county says the dam was inspected by their experts, there doesn't appear there were any recommendations made. 

Usually the county is only involved if public property is threatened, and in this case it was because several roads were involved.
   
There is a device called a beaver deceiver, a big pvc pipe that can be put through a beaver dam to allow more water through, but there's no evidence that was involved here.
 

KING 5's Travis Pittman, Glenn Farley, Eric Wilkinson and Susan Wyatt contributed to this report.

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