River conditions too dangerous to retrieve flooded mobile homes, - KFBB.com News, Sports and Weather

River conditions too dangerous to retrieve flooded mobile homes, Missoula officials say

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courtesy MT DNRC courtesy MT DNRC

MISSOULA - The flooding Clark Fork is too full of debris to safely retrieve mobile homes that have been washed off their foundations, according to county officials.

Sheriff TJ McDermott and other county representatives gave an update on the flooding situation Thursday morning. 

They said that emergency officials tried to retrieve mobile homes on Wednesday, but it was too dangerous, since entire trees were floating by in the rushing river. The homes will need to be eventually retrieved so they don't collide with bridges downstream.

Lt. Gov. Mike Coomey attended Thursday's briefing and asked questions.

"Everything we're hearing is that you're doing a very competent and thorough job," Coomey told Missoula County officials.

McDermott says that the sheriff's department is bringing in deputies, reserve deputies, volunteer search and rescue and other staff to work round-the-clock issuing evacuation orders and patrolling closed-off evacuation areas. McDermott told Coomey that they eventually might need to ask for more state assistance to give their department some relief.

"As this event moves forward, we're going to have to figure something out there, because everybody's tired," McDermott said.

Dozens of homes remain evacuated as the river is expected to reach record highs by this weekend. Hundreds more are threatened by rising floodwaters damaging property and contaminating drinking water.

The county and state are listing the most up-to-date information on the situation on InciWeb.

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