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Blackfeet Nation cleaning up after weekend flooding

Posted at 1:00 PM, May 29, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-29 13:29:56-04

GREAT FALLS – Officials on the Blackfeet Indian Reservation are in the process of cleaning up areas impacted by flooding earlier this week.

The Blackfeet Tribe declared a flooding disaster on Sunday and established an Incident Command Post on the reservation, which is defined by the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) as the “location of the tactical-level, on-scene incident command organization.”

According to incident commander Lyle St. Goddard, there have been several requests for water as wells were affected by flooding.

St. Goddard said teams are not only checking on people in impacted areas but taking pictures of damaged roads that will be sent to the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

Looking Glass, or Highway 49, near Browning will remain closed for at least a few more days as rock slides and pavement drops have damaged the scenic route.

The 12-mile highway runs north from Highway 2 at East Glacier Park Village to Highway 89 at Kiowa. The route is closed seasonally during the winter due to weather conditions.

Browning, MT State Road Info reported crews will begin repairs as soon as the road dries. They expect to reopen Looking Glass by the end of this week.

The water on US Highway 2 three miles west of East Glacier has since cleared.

The National Weather Service reported that numerous small rivers and creeks have peaked, but remain near or above flood stage including Badger Creek and Two Medicine River near Browning.

A flood warning for rain and snowmelt remains in effect for portions of Glacier and Pondera counties.

The Red Cross Shelter will be broken down Tuesday after accepting three people who were unable to get home due to flooding.

Anyone in need of help — or would like to help those impacted by the floods — should contact the Incident Command Center at (406) 338-2938.

-Margaret DeMarco reporting for MTN News