Nearly 2 dozen people rescued from floodwaters in Lewis County | Local News

AIR 12 flew over Lewis County where homes were completely surrounded and vehicles submerged by floodwaters.

LEWIS COUNTY, Washington (KPTV) – Nearly two dozen people were rescued from high waters in Lewis County on Friday after heavy rains and melting snow caused severe flooding in the area.

A large stretch of Interstate 5 in Lewis County reopened shortly before 1 p.m. Friday after being closed for several hours due to flooding.

The Washington Department of Transportation closed I-5 between milepost 68 and milepost 88 near State Route 12, south of Chehalis, due to flooding. No detour was established because alternate routes were also experiencing flooding problems.

According to Lewis County Emergency Management, 21 people were rescued in Chehalis and Centralia: 10 from a Chehalis apartment building and the rest in Centralia. About 50 people were at a Red Cross shelter set up in Centralia Middle on Friday afternoon.

Centralia officials sent 1,400 voluntary evacuation orders Thursday night. An area nursing home also had to be evacuated, according to The Chronicle.

No injuries, deaths or disappearances have been reported.

FOX 12’s Camila Orti says the combination of heavy rain, saturated soils and melting snow is what caused the deluge.

Camila Orti from FOX 12 explains why we are seeing such severe flooding in Southwest Washington.

A group of Washington National Guard troops are in the area to help with the punching bag and other needs.

FOX 12 meteorologist Jeff Forgeron says the Chehalis River continues to rise and is entering a major flood stage. The river is expected to rise around Saturday morning, breaking out of the major flood stage around Sunday morning.

The Washington State Patrol reported several road closures as of noon Friday. Find the full list here.

Floods are also causing problems in northwestern Oregon. A section of Highway 47 in rural Columbia County was razed Thursday, forcing a highway closure there. And flooding has also been reported in the Forest Grove area.

Click here for the latest FOX 12 forecast.

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