Tacoma Declares State of Civil Emergency

Just in case you didn’t know … it’s raining out there. And, it’s raining enough that the Puyallup is expected to bust its banks early Thursday morning. With that in mind, Tacoma’s Mayor and City Manager have declared a state of civil emergency.

The declaration was made based on flooding risks to the City’s Central Wastewater Treatment Plant, which could pose a risk to public health.

The City’s Emergency Operations Center will open at 6 p.m. tonight and will remain open for the duration of the emergency.

The City’s surface water crews have switched to a 24-hour work schedule to attempt to keep the more than 22,000 public storm drains clean in Tacoma. Drains near street corners and in low areas of streets and parking lots are the main concern. Drivers navigating Tacoma’s rain-logged streets or in areas that are prone to slides, such as Schuster Parkway and Marine View Drive, are encouraged to drive with caution. Remember that it is not safe to walk or drive through flooded areas.

Check your basements.

How are you doing? Staying dry?

Link to the City of Tacoma


I-5 in Fife may be closing due to flooding. TNT has the full press release here.

Do you want to help the folks at Exit133 pay our bills and keep up with of all things Tacoma? Do you want to see even more coverage? Exit133 has always been free to read and comment, and it will stay that way. However, over the years, readers have contributed to the bank account to help us keep up our coverage of goings-on around town. Contribute and this message disappears!

Support Exit133



“The declaration was made based on flooding risks to the City’s Central Wastewater Treatment Plant, which could pose a risk to public health.”

Shouldn’t we be informed as to why it is a risk to public health?

January 7, 2009 at 7:43 pm / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0

RR Anderson

you might get poopie water on your fingers.  that’s bad for public health.

January 7, 2009 at 9:02 pm / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0

crenshaw sepulveda

You can tell RR is a new father.

January 7, 2009 at 10:09 pm / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0

altered chords

Not staying dry.  Slept 3 hrs last night.  Needed to pump water out of the basement every 2 hrs.

January 8, 2009 at 9:17 am / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0


Two parked cars were under a small mud/treeslide at the Pt Defiance ferry terminal this morning. Blocked traffic and created a muddy distraction.

January 8, 2009 at 2:16 pm / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0


@Jake: Many of the pipes that handle blackwater also handle stormwater. They have a divider down the middle that covers only about 3/4 of the diameter of the pipe. If you get too much stormwater the two will mix and you’ve got poop coming out where it shouldn’t.

That’d be one reason.

January 8, 2009 at 5:48 pm / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0


I am worried, but I am also thinking how we can help solve this? I mean clearing storm drains is one thing, but when you think about how much control do we have over flooding. None. Need sandbags anyone?

January 8, 2009 at 8:08 pm / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0

Thorax O'Tool

I spent 2 hrs over the last couple of nights clearing leaves outta storm drains.

When your entire intersection is under 12” of water, it’s do that or flood your engine.

Vrooommmmm….. glub glub.

No thanks. Besides, I was already wet, may as well get really soaked.

January 9, 2009 at 12:22 am / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0

David Boe

So does anyone else think it is peculiar that the City of Tacoma is going to spend $40m+ on an ‘platinum green’ Urban Waters facility to study the clean-up options for urban watershed enviroments – meanwhile the City has a sewage treatment plant that is at the continued risk of being flooded and subsequently creating a huge urban water pollution disaster for Commencement Bay?

January 9, 2009 at 8:59 am / Reply / Quote and reply

0 | 0

Post A New Comment

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

Potentially Related Articles