Emergency crews prep for flooding

Grants Pass, Ore. — After this week’s snow and ice, emergency crews are preparing for what comes next – all that snow has to go somewhere.

Over the past two days – Medford, alone, received up one foot of snowfall. That’s snow, that’s about to melt, and could cause problems. Austin Prince is the division chief of Rural Metro Fire.

Lately, he and his crew have been busy working on snow-related incidents in and around Josephine County. But now, snow is the least of his worries.

“We’re assuming that there’s going to be some run off that’s going to cause problems somewhere,” Prince said.

People living near waterways are especially prone to flooding, even if they’re bordering fairly small streams.

“Commit to the flooding . It potential might not happen to the degree that everyone’s concerned. But then again, it could be really bad,” Prince said.

Either way, prince says you should take precautions.

“Those water levels rise fairly quick, and it catches people off guard. What it ends up doing, is it surrounds their home, and then they realize they can’t get out,” Prince said.

The number one thing you can do to protect you and your home, is to be proactive before it’s too late.

“If they’re concerned about that being a problem, now is the time to get that taken care of,” Prince said.

The last significant flood the rogue valley’s seen was 20 years ago in 1997. Rural Metro Fire said it’s working each day to prepare for the next flood – so it won’t catch them off guard like the last.

To prepare at home, you can get sand bags to act as a barrier. They are available at any hardware store.

NBC5 News Reporter and Weather Forecaster Nikki Torres graduated from Washington State University with a degree in Strategic Communication from The Edward R. Murrow College of Communication.

She also received a minor in Business Administration from the Washington State University Carson College of Business. Prior to coming to NBC5, Nikki was an intern at KHQ Local News, the NBC affiliate in Spokane.

She comes to Southern Oregon from the state of Washington, where she grew up just south of Seattle. She loves running, exploring the Pacific Northwest, watching a good football game and spending time with her dog, Gisele. True to her roots, Nikki is a proud WSU Cougar fan and loyal Seahawks fan.

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