JUNEAU - Gov. Sean Parnell has declared the washout of portions of the Taylor Highway in eastern Alaska a state disaster.
As part of the declaration, the governor's office says the state will either use or seek federal funds for costs associated with responding to the emergency, repairing infrastructure and taking steps to avoid recurring problems in the future.
The state Department of Transpiration estimated at least $6 million in damages after heavy rains earlier this month caused landslides and washouts on parts of the road.
Parnell, who toured the site recently, called the highway an important emergency and transportation corridor. While the governor's office said emergency access was established, rains have continued to cause damage, and Parnell said in a release that he wants the department to use "any resources necessary" to quickly re-establish fuller access.