Sever Weather Damage 21-18 Emergency Proclamation by the Governor: Covers the severe wind and rainstorm event that began on November 12, 2021. https://www.governor.wa.gov/sites/default/files/proclamations/21-18%20-%20Severe%20Weather%20Damage%20%28tmp%29.pdf
ADVISORIES, WATCHES AND WARNINGS:
Environment Canada has issued a "Strong Wind Warning in Effect" for the Strait of Georgia-South of Nanaimo: Wind southeast 5 to 15 knots becoming light near midnight then increasing to northwest 10 to 15 late overnight. Wind increasing to northwest 15 to 25 Wednesday morning then becoming northwest 20 to 30 Wednesday evening.
SR-20 (North Cascade Highway) is open; however, there are several areas that will need to have emergency repairs this spring/summer/fall. Traffic control lights are placed at those locations. Long delays should be expected especially over long weekends and holidays. In addition to emergency repairs there are areas where normal road maintenance is scheduled along with several culvert replacements for fish passage. Check WSDOT website for current conditions before traveling.
Inland Whatcom County Weather
We're going to see some sun today with increasing clouds late and a chance for some showers overnight, then drizzle tomorrow. Look for highs in the mid-60s today and mid-50s overnight. Winds will be lighter today from a southerly direction. Tomorrow's highs will be bout the same as today and drizzle and showers should clear out later in the day. On Thursday we'll see mostly sunny skies and the temperatures will be in the upper 60s. Thursday night will be mostly cloudy and the northern part of the county will see some northwest winds developing. Point Roberts could see gusts to 29 mph or so. As we move into Friday and Saturday, we're going to see a warm-up with temperatures in the 70s on Friday and low to mid-80s in places on Saturday.
Rivers and Streams
No dramatic changes in the Nooksack River level for this week; however, the warmer temperatures over the weekend will cause the flow to be a little greater and raising the river level a little bit. The biggest concern would be the Nooksack River temperature as the snowmelt will keep the river water very cold. Be very careful if planning any activity in the water as hypothermia can occur quickly. Remember, you can always go to the Public Works website and check the river levels - https://www.whatcomcounty.us/666/Forecasts-Current-River-Conditions.
Whatcom County Coastal Weather
Onshore flow with the strongest winds via the Strait of Juan de Fuca in the afternoon and evening hours each day. High pressure is just offshore with low pressure inland. Winds. Today: S wind 5 to 15 kt. Wind waves 2 ft or less. A slight chance of drizzle in the afternoon. Tonight: SW wind 5 to 15 kt. Wind waves 2 ft or less. A chance of drizzle in the evening. A slight chance of drizzle after midnight. A chance of showers. Tomorrow: W wind 10 to 20 kt. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. A slight chance of drizzle. Tomorrow Night: SW wind 15 to 25 kt. Wind waves 2 to 4 ft.
Note: The forecast shows 15-25 knot winds for tomorrow night. No Small Craft Advisory has been issued as of this time, but look for one to be issued later today or tonight. Monitor marine weather for updates.
Emergency Management Tips and Reminders
While we have been extremely fortunate concerning the risk for wildfire to date, things could change rapidly with dry, hot weather. Now is the time to inventory your home environment to see what wildfire risks you can mitigate against. To that extent, the following information was taken from the National Fire Protection Agency on wildfire preparedness. Additional information about the wildfires and the Firewise program can be found at the NFPA website: https://www.nfpa.org/Public-Education/Fire-causes-and-risks/Wildfire/Preparing-homes-for-wildfire
1. HOME IGNITION ZONES: To increase your home’s chance of surviving a wildfire, choose fire-resistant building materials and limit the amount of flammable vegetation in the three home ignition zones. The zones include the Immediate Zone: (0 to 5 feet around the house), the Intermediate Zone (5 to 30 feet), and the Extended Zone (30 to 100 feet).
2. LANDSCAPING AND MAINTENANCE: To reduce ember ignitions and fire spread, trim branches that overhang the home, porch, and deck and prune branches of large trees up to 6 to 10 feet (depending on their height) from the ground. Remove plants containing resins, oils, and waxes. Use crushed stone or gravel instead of flammable mulches in the Immediate Zone (0 to 5 feet around the house). Keep your landscape in good condition.
3. ROOFING AND VENTS: Class A fire-rated roofing products, such as composite shingles, metal, concrete, and clay tiles, offer the best protection. Inspect shingles or roof tiles and replace or repair those that are loose or missing to prevent ember penetration. Box in eaves, but provide ventilation to prevent condensation and mildew. Roof and attic vents should be screened to prevent ember entry.
4. DECKS AND PORCHES: Never store flammable materials underneath decks or porches. Remove dead vegetation and debris from under decks and porches and between deck board joints.
5. SIDING AND WINDOWS: Embers can collect in small nooks and crannies and ignite combustible materials; radiant heat from flames can crack windows. Use fire-resistant siding such as brick, fibercement, plaster, or stucco, and use dual-pane tempered glass windows.
6. EMERGENCY RESPONDER ACCESS: Ensure your home and neighborhood have legible and clearly marked street names and numbers. Driveways should be at least 12 feet wide with a vertical clearance of 15 feet for emergency vehicle access.
7. FINAL THOUGHTS:
Information concerning face coverings and other protective actions can be found on the Whatcom County Health Department Website.
These Daily Briefings on Incidents, Advisories, Watches and Warnings, current weather and Emergency Management tips are published Monday through Friday, as well as during times of increased awareness or actual events.