Submitted by San Juan County Department of Emergency Management.
A blocked culvert has created a dangerous situation on Laporte Road on Orcas Island. A large amount of water has built up on the uphill side of the road, and the roadway is in danger of failure, in particular with more rain in the forecast.
The closure is on Laporte Road, just up from the junction with John Jones Road. There are approximately 19 residences above the closure.
San Juan County Public Works Director Colin Huntemer wants to highlight the seriousness of this situation, “While it is impossible to know exactly what might happen, I am very concerned about the potential of a catastrophic failure of the roadway. People should not be traversing the closed area. We will be further investigating the situation and exploring avenues for reducing water levels, but for now the road is not safe to cross.”
San Juan County Emergency Management is working to alert residents who are living downstream in the drainage and will be working with emergency responders to ensure access to impacted residences in the event of a 911 call from the area. More information will be shared with the community as it becomes available.