RICHLAND — With flood waters about a foot deep on Jones Road on Sunday, the owner of Country View Boarding Kennels in Richland had to get creative about how to get dogs back to their owners.
Michelle Young said she knows the road well, so she loaded crates into her Ford F-150 pickup and met the owners on Van Giesen to deliver their beloved pets.
“I don’t want to recommend that to anyone else,” she said. “I know where all the potholes are.”
Water levels in the Yakima River at Kiona have been creeping up for a few days and officially reached its 13-foot flood stage at 6 p.m. Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.
The Yakima crested at a depth of 13.27 feet at 7 a.m. Sunday.
Waters have been receding since, and dropped just below 13 feet about 5:30 p.m.
Flood waters spilled into low-lying areas of West Richland and Benton City, including the West Richland Golf Course and Beach RV Park in Benton City — locations prone to springtime flooding as snow melts off from higher elevations into the Yakima.
Sara Schwartz, spokeswoman for Benton County Emergency Services, said the agency hadn’t heard of any significant damage from flooding Sunday.
No one had to be rescued or evacuated, she said.
“There was water across the roads north of Van Giesen (Street),” she said. “Some yards had water. ... We haven’t heard of any homes being damaged.”
Schwartz said emergency officials likely will go out today to canvas the area and assess the flooded areas.
Young said her house is up on the hill overlooking the Richland Airport, so her property was safe from flood waters, but she had heard several of her neighbors had to move horses, cattle and sheep to safer ground.
On Sunday evening, water still was streaming across Jones Road even though overall water levels slowly were dropping, and Young expected she would have to load dog crates into her pickup again today for the four dogs coming into her kennel and 10 scheduled to go home to their owners.
“I will be doing the same thing again all day,” she said.
* Michelle Dupler: 509-582-1543; firstname.lastname@example.org