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Box Elder County leaders looking for state, federal aid in fighting back floodwaters

By Mike Anderson | Posted - Feb. 27, 2017 at 10:00 p.m.


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TREMONTON — Weather is impacting resources in Box Elder County. County leaders are now looking for state and federal aid in fighting back floodwaters. Some of those state resources come in, but the hope is that more will soon be on the way.

An 8-inch line pump was set up on Monday to help clear water out. But there's still a lot of work to be done before this very active flood season is over.

Jeremy Hansen, a farmer, said he's been doing what he can on his property, but it's just not enough. With the weather cooling down these past few days, he's hoping this will make an impact.

"It's about two and a half feet deep of water,” Hansen said. We got alfalfa in this field here, we’ve got a bunch of winter wheat, that we've got a lot of water on, and we don't know if it's going to survive,” Hansen said.

It's just one example of resources being stretched thin across Box Elder County.

"We've got enough damage that we easily meet our county required threshold to file a disaster or emergency declaration," said Mark Millett, emergency manager for Box Elder County.

So far, damage to public property is estimated at nearly $3 million. Most of that accounts for impacts to roads throughout the area.

"Collectively between us and Cache County, we're expecting that we'll meet a state threshold, that would allow the state to ask for federal disaster funds," Millett said.

Meantime, the help continues to roll in from around the state. Around a dozen public works employees from Salt Lake City and County are in Box Elder County, giving the local guys some much-needed time off.

But for many home and property owners, there doesn't seem to be much of a break.

"Everybody's basements' have been flooding — pumps been running all the time,” Hansen said. “This is once in a lifetime, I think. I’ve been out here for 30-some years, and this has been a lot of water."

At one time, the county had about a dozen of those heavy-duty pumps running. They have 30,000 sandbags out and another 20,000 ready to go for the next round.

Contributing: Xoel Cardenas

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Mike Anderson

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