MISSOULA – Area rivers are once again on the rise in Western Montana with more flooding expected to occur over the next few days.
The Clark Fork River near Missoula has started to rise again and is expected to once again reach major flood stage on Friday evening. Based on current predictions and forecasts, the river is expected to crest at 13.17 feet on Saturday morning.
Meanwhile, the Bitterroot River near Missoula also is currently expected to rise and reach minor flood stage around on Thursday evening with a crest of 12.33 feet predicted around midnight on Saturday,
The Blackfoot River near Bonner is predicted to reach minor flood stage around noon on Thursday and is expected to crest at 10.71 feet around midnight on Saturday.
Authorities caution that with major flood levels predicted on the Clark Fork again, residents should not become complacent and to continue planning and preparing for evacuation orders.
It is also strongly recommended that all Missoula County residents sign up for the Missoula County Smart911 alerts which is how emergency warnings and notices are communicated to those affected.
A flood information line at 258-INFO, has been established and is staffed from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. until further notice. Callers will hear an updated recording after hours. Additionally, a public information trailer is set up at the Wheat Montana parking lot and is staffed from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Information will be posted after hours.
The Clark Fork River remains closed to recreational activities from the Reserve Street Bridge to Kona Bridge due to dangers caused by downed power lines in the river and high water levels full of hazardous debris.
A sandbagging station and central resources hub are available at the following locations:
- Fort Missoula – Volunteers can help fill sandbags from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Check in with a Team Rubicon representative upon arrival. Volunteers must have current health insurance to help with sandbagging. The location is across the road from the Child Development Center, located at 3335 Lt. Moss Road
- Missoula County Detention Center – Sandbags can be picked up in the east parking lot, 2340 Mullan Road. Limited supply of filled sandbags are currently available, and assistance loading sandbags into vehicles is available from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. •
- Frenchtown Fire Station 1 – Self-fill sandbag station, filled and unfilled sandbags and sand are available at 16875 Marion Street in Frenchtown
- East Missoula Fire Department – Self-fill sandbag station, filled and unfilled sandbags and sand are available at 314 Montana Avenue
- Seeley Lake – Sandbags can be obtained at the Seeley Lake Volunteer Fire Department.
An evacuation order remains in effect for the following areas:
- Tower Street, north of 3rd Street
- Kehrwald Drive
- Channel Drive
- Nancy Lou Drive
- Keck Street and Stone Street – north of Flamingo Drive
- Schmidt Road
- Off Mullan Road
- South Harpers Bridge Road
- Hamel Road
- Under the Reserve Street Bridge
Due to danger from flooding conditions, residents under evacuation order are asked to vacate their property immediately. Affected residents should check in at the information trailer set up in the Wheat Montana parking lot on the corner of 3rd and Reserve streets.
- Tower Street closed to all traffic, north of 3rd Street
- Nancy Lou Drive closed to all traffic
- Stone Street north of Flamingo Drive closed to all traffic
- Schmidt Road closed to all traffic
- Harpers Bridge Road closed to all traffic
- Hamel Road closed to all traffic
- Short Street (and connectors) open to local traffic only
- Preston Street (and connectors) open to local traffic only
- Hiberta Street north of 3rd Street open to local traffic only
- Stonybrook Drive open to local traffic only