Flood Incident Assessment Team begins work on national forest lands

The Flood Incident Assessment Team established by the Arapaho and Roosevelt National Forests earlier this week has started rapidly assessing the scope and scale of the flood damage and risk to Forest facilities, roads and infrastructure as an initial step to determine long-term repair and rehabilitation process on the Boulder and Canyon Lakes Ranger Districts.

The area to be assessed covers approximately 609,000 acres. The team started reconnaissance flights of the area yesterday to begin gathering data. Information will be gathered through more flights as well as by ground teams when safe to do so. The Team is also coordinating closely with ongoing FEMA, State and county operations.

The Forest implemented a closure on both districts on Sept. 17 that closes a large area for public safety. As information is gathered this closure may expand to include other areas. Forest officials are still discouraging all travel and activities on the Boulder, Canyon Lakes and Clear Creek Ranger Districts and the Pawnee National Grassland until further notice even areas not within the closure.

Please use caution in all rain affected areas and travel only when necessary. Information about road status, closures and the assessment team will be posted at www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/flood2013.

“Our first priority is to complete this assessment. Once we know more we anticipate a great deal of work will need to be done, much with the support of our partners and volunteers,” said Forest Supervisor Glenn Casamassa.

Information about future volunteer opportunities will be posted online at: www.fs.usda.gov/goto/arp/volunteers

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