Last week saw the inundation of several Colorado counties as torrential rain dropped 18 inches of water on Northern and Central parts of the state. The total number of affected communities has risen to 12 and includes Boulder, Denver, Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Clear Creek, Fremont, Jefferson, Morgan, Logan, Pueblo, Washington, and Weld counties. Boulder was one of the hardest hit cities due to the nearby Boulder Creek which normally flows at a rate of ~200 cubic feet per second, but with last week’s storm it overflowed its banks at a surging 5,000 cubic feet per second.
Currently, at least 5 individuals have died and 500 people remain unaccounted for. Reports indicate that approximately 19,000 homes have been damaged in the flood, with over 1,500 homes destroyed. As many as 30 highway bridges have been destroyed as well and another 20 are seriously damaged. The federal government has already declared Boulder County a major disaster area, authorizing the provisioning of temporary housing for those displaced by the large-scale devastation in the Boulder area.
As the flood waters recede, the long road to rebuilding will start this week. The city and county of Boulder has been working with local trash haulers to provide roll-off dumpsters in the area. These are to help relief workers and residents dispose of all manner of storm debris, including destroyed possessions and refuse left over from the flood waters. The city has also made sure that municipal curbside services remain operational in areas where streets are still accessible.
The entire state will take a long time to fully recover. The total damage to infrastructure, businesses, and residential areas is sure to measure in the hundreds of millions of dollars. But with sustained outside support Colorado is sure to recover in short order.
Via: The Denver Channel