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January 15, 2019

1/9/2019 1:34:00 PM
Cheap dike option exists

“If it ain’t broke.” Back when it was my responsibility to plan for events like flood response, I tackled the eventuality of protecting LaConner from riverine flooding. I approached the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials at the time with this scenario: Let’s say that the Emergency Operations Center has been mobilized and a flood event is imminent. At that point an “emergency” has been declared.
The town owns several hundred cement “ecology” blocks, located on high ground at the wastewater treatment facility.
Could those blocks be utilized to build a dike wall, along with geotextile fabric and EPDM rubber sheeting to build a dike, and would we be able to procure “emergency” permits, to do so within a matter of hours, at that point? Also, would the COE be able to mobilize equipment and manpower for that in a timely manner. Again, yes.
The length of that dike is what, 2,800 feet +/-? Flood waters would take anywhere from 24 to 72 hours to reach and peak, if I recall correctly.
Plenty of time to assemble and build, with materials already bought and paid for. You can listen to the prevaricator from the lower north ward or prepare for rising sea levels instead.
Gordon Bell
La Conner

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