Officials keep eye on Chena River flooding

Posted: Monday, May 04, 2009

FAIRBANKS - Fairbanks officials are keeping an eye on the Chena River.

Record-high temperatures in recent days are causing the river to rise.

The water level in the Chena River rose 4 feet in downtown Fairbanks on Saturday afternoon. Ted Fathauer, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service office in Fairbanks, said a large run of ice passed through downtown Fairbanks between noon and 4 p.m.

Borough emergency officials, meanwhile, are continuing to monitor the Chena and other rivers in the Tanana Valley for flooding because of increased snowmelt and ice jams.

The high temperature in Fairbanks hit 74 degrees on Saturday, which was four degrees shy of a third consecutive daily record at Fairbanks International Airport, where the high temperature was 76 degrees the previous two days.

There was some minor flooding caused by a large ice jam that later dislodged just upstream from the Nordale Road bridge.

The North Star Volunteer Fire Department rescued three residents who were trapped in their home in the Steamboat Landing subdivision because of flooding.

There was no flooding or ice jams reported in the Tanana River at Salcha, but ice jams and high water were causing minor flooding along Rosie Creek Road and at Perkins Landing in west Fairbanks, Fathauer said.

No flooding or ice jams were reported in the Chatanika River.

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