Pine Flat sees evacuation warning amid storm

Local first responder agencies issue an evacuation warning for Pine Flat due to recent flooding

TULARE COUNTY – After the most recent storm looms over Pine Flat and surrounding areas, local agencies issued an evacuation warning to prepare residents for a potential emergency.

An evacuation warning was issued for Pine Flat on March 29, and is for all homes, businesses and structures. It is also in effect for all access roads south of Deer Creek Mill Road, east of Pine Flat Drive, north of White River Road and west of Flying T Drive. Since this is a warning, residents should remain prepared to leave if conditions change. The warning was issued by the Tulare County Sheriff Office (TCSO), Cal Fire and the Tulare County Fire Department.

According to the incident report from the Cal Fire Tulare Unit, heavy rainfall is expected to continue throughout the county, which includes Pine Flat. Not only that, but snowfall is also expected to continue in mountains above 6,000 feet. Residents should be aware of “rapidly rising water levels,” which will make roads become blocked off or extremely slick. The report cautions residents to not travel through running water due to unseen dangers, such as sinkholes, culvert washouts and debris that may be present under seemingly shallow waters.

The California Department of Water Resources will be coordinating with their Flood Control Center in order to provide resources to mitigate flood damages in the county, according to the incident report. They will also be helping with welfare checks and water rescue as the need arises.

“Crews are closely monitoring all potential hazards and are ready to respond to all developing and dynamic situations,” Cal Fire stated in their incident report.

TCSO advised residents to follow these general safety tips around flooded or snowed-in areas:

  • Never drive into flood waters, as they are deeper, colder and faster-moving than they appear
  • Do not operate electrical equipment in standing water

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