Why erosion is more of a problem than flooding for Walla Walla - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Why erosion is more of a problem than flooding for Walla Walla

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WALLA WALLA, WA - Many parts of our region have been hit hard with flooding. One area that's suffered from the heavy floodwaters is Walla Walla County. Reporter Kristina Shalhoup went there today and spoke to Walla Walla's Emergency Management Director about how they're handling the situation.

"Oh, it's most definitely one of the worst years in a long time," said Liz Jesse, Walla Walla Emergency Management Director.

One of the worst years for flooding, and yet Walla Walla isn't underwater, in part because of the way the water runs under Walla Walla.

"The Corps of Engineers came in and completed that project as the result of some significant flooding we had in Walla Walla in the 30s," said Jesse.

At the point where the flood project begins, water from Mill Creek. "It continues to go down through the City of Walla Walla in a concrete channel that contains it," Jesse said.

Water can be directed from that channel toward Bennington Lake, and the system has proved especially useful for years like this one. That being said, Walla Walla isn't out of the woods, or the water, quite yet.

"We've been experiencing a lot of erosion, a lot of debris in the creek channels."

Erosion that can become especially dangerous when driving comes into play.

"We try and get the message out: 'turn around, don't drown' because it might look like it's just a shallow bit of water on the road, but the road may be washed out underneath that," explained Jesse.

Until all the water washes away, Jesse told us her best tips for people were to look out for Emergency Management alerts, get flood insurance if you live near a creek or stream, and call Walla Walla dispatch at 509-527-1960 if you encounter any flooding issues.