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Water begins encroaching on Slater Road as the Nooksack River level passes the 16.5-foot mark at 8:30am (November 23, 2017). Photo: My Ferndale News

Increased flooding expected as Nooksack River continues to rise

Heavy rain in the Cascade Mountains along with an increase in the snow level over the past few days has driven the Nooksack River above flood stage.

By the time the Nooksack River reached a level of 16-feet at Ferndale around 6pm yesterday, three roads had been closed and there was water over the roadway in other locations.

The river level dropped briefly overnight but has since resumed rising and by 8:30am had surpassed yesterday’s highpoint.

Signage was being installed on Slater Road around 8:30am to warn drivers of water over the roadway east of the river bridge. By that time, water had covered half of each lane. Officials expect the road will be closed sometime today (UPDATE 10:30am – Slater Road has been closed).

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The current river level forecast expects the river to crest past the 19.5-foot mark, well into the official minor flood stage range of 18 to 20.5 feet, after 8pm tonight (Thursday).

In addition to road impacts, properties adjacent to the river can expect to see minor flooding as the river overtops its banks. This includes VanderYacht Park which can be expected to be impacted by both the rising water table and flood waters.

If the river were to continue past the forecast 19.5-foot mark and reach the 20-foot mark, officials say flooding of low-lying residential areas and roads around VanderYacht Park can be expected.

The river level is not expected to drop below 15-feet again, a point where road impacts often begin, until after 1am Saturday. As a result, flood impacts can be expected to continue through at least Friday.

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The real-time map below indicates roads closed or impacted by floodwaters. This map also appears on the Discover Ferndale Traffic page.

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