Due to a lapse in federal funding, this USDA website will not be actively updated. Once funding has been reestablished, online operations will continue. On-going operational updates will be posted here (https://www.fs.fed.us/shutdown) as we are able to provide them.

 
 

Flood Impact Assessment Questions and Answers

Flood Damage at the intersection of Forest Road 128 and CR 43

Above: Damage to U.S. Highway 34 near Forest Service Road 128 on the Canyon Lakes Ranger District near Drake, Colo.

What is the purpose of the Flood Impact Assessment Team (FIAT)?
The purpose of the team is to rapidly assess the scope and scale of the flood damage and risk to Forest facilities and infrastructure as an initial step to determine the long-term repair and rehabilitation process on the Boulder and Canyon Lakes Ranger Districts.

Who is on the Team?
The Team was comprised mostly of Arapaho and Roosevelt employees. The team was set up similar to an incident management team to keep our work safe and efficient.

How will the team do this work?
The Team surveyed the flooded area on National Forest lands by helicopter or by ground crews where it was safe to use them. They collected information and compiled it into an assessment. The group identified damage, public safety concerns, and immediate stabilization needs for roads, facilities and other infrastructure.

What happens after the assessment?
The ARP will determine what personnel; resources and funding are needed to address the damage. The ARP will explore partnerships to add to their capacity for accomplishing the work. Work on items identified in the assessment is prioritized by:

  • Needs to be repaired or stabilized immediately for health or safety
  • Should be repaired, rebuilt or stabilized to avoid additional costly damage that may occur
  • Repair or rehabilitation can wait

Recovery from the flood event will take several years, additional funding and resources to address. Not all high priority infrastructure and facilities can be repaired in one year. In addition some damaged infrastructure and facilities will be evaluated further to determine whether it is   appropriate to be repaired, reestablished or decommissioned.

How soon will the closure be lifted?
The closure will be in place as long as it is needed for public safety.  It is expected that some areas and access will remain closed over the winter.  Keep up to date at www.fs.usda.goc/goto/arp/2013flood

Are there other areas closed or restricted?
We have several closures across the units for various reasons. It is good to check our website at www.fs.usda.gov/arp. Please respect this and all signed closures. They are in place for public safety and to allow for rehabilitation efforts.  Keep up-to-date at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/flood2013.

Although these areas have re-opened, additional rain or snow could also impact conditions of currently opened areas. Please continue to check our flood website or follow us on Twitter @usfsarp.

Areas that have re-opened are still near or accessed by routes that are being used by those conducting road repair, continuing emergency response support and other activities. Visitors should expect delays and additional restrictions may be in place by county.

Please use caution in all flood affected areas. Remember, your safety is your responsibility. Continue to check the web for the latest information on road closures and conditions. If you encounter an unsafe situation on a road or trail that is open, please stop and turn around. Emergency response access is limited. Be prepared with emergency supplies when traveling.

What are you doing to provide access to those stuck on private land?
We are working closely with both counties. We are working to provide temporary access through the national forest to assist the sheriff with the evacuation effort and other short-term access needs such as allowing evacuees to gather more belongings and winterize their property. Many of the roads on National Forest are primitive near these areas. Most of these roads are not passable in the winter. After normal access is returned we will partner to rehabilitate this temporary access and restore NFS lands. Finding alternative access is difficult and can cross many ownerships. The Forest Service will do their best to provide the road connections across NFS that are needed between other ownerships.

When can hunters go back in to the area?
Hunters and other forest visitors will be allowed into the closed areas when it is deemed safe to do so. You can view the closure at: www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/flood2013.
Some areas may also be closed to prevent further resource damage due to wet conditions.

How do I volunteer to help?
Please monitor our volunteer page at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/volunteers. We know we will need help from our partners and volunteers in the future.

I need assistance with evacuation, home rebuild etc. what should I do?

  • FEMA:1-800-621-FEMA
  • www.disasterassistance.gov
  • Boulder County Disaster Assistance:303-413-7730
  • www.BoulderCountyFlood.org
  • Larimer County Emergency Information: 970-498-5500
  • www.larimer.org/emergency
  • Gilpin County:303-582-5500

Where do I get more information?

Post Assessment report Questions and Answers

What’s next? What now?
Next steps for the Forest include providing an organization to address the needs identified in the assessment, identifying additional assessment work that is needed, continuing to work with the Federal Highway Administration and setting priorities of the work that needs to be done. The timeframe for addressing all of these needs will take years.

Not all high priority infrastructure and facilities can be repaired and some need further evaluation to determine whether it is appropriate to be repaired, reestablished or decommissioned.

When will the “low” damage areas be opened?
It really all depends. Some “low” damage areas are not accessible due to other road damage. Also, it is unclear what winter and spring conditions will do to those “low” damage roads and additional assessments may be needed.

The closure order will be dynamic as conditions change. We will re-open areas as they are assessed.   As with much of this flood situation, it will take time to get all areas reopened to the public.  

Although some areas have re-opened, additional rain or snow could also impact conditions and damage still exists in these areas. Please continue to check our flood website or follow us on Twitter @usfsarp.

Areas that have re-opened are still near or accessed by routes that are being used by those conducting road repair, continuing emergency response support and other activities. Visitors should expect delays and additional restrictions may be in place by county.

Please use caution in all flood affected areas. Remember, your safety is your responsibility. Continue to check the web for the latest information on road closures and conditions. If you encounter an unsafe situation on a road or trail that is open, please stop and turn around. Emergency response access is limited. Be prepared with emergency supplies when traveling.

Did you find what you expected in the assessment?
One unexpected finding is that the scope is larger than what the assessment teams was charged with considering. The assessment only looked at facilities and infrastructure. Many trails were not included in the original assessment and resource impacts were also not included. Additional resource impacts will need to be considered, such as fisheries habitat and cultural resources.





https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/arp/alerts-notices/?cid=stelprdb5440254