Frequent updates: 7 dead, 6 unaccounted for in Colorado floods

POSTED: 04:30 AM MST Dec 24, 2013    UPDATED: 09:51 AM MDT Sep 23, 2013 
MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. -

7 people are confirmed dead and thousands of homes have been damaged or destroyed by historic flooding in Colorado.

Refresh this article for the very latest from around the state.
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Monday, Sept. 23


9:51 p.m. - 6 people remain unaccounted for. The death toll stands at 7.

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Saturday, Sept. 21

State lawmakers have been assured a $100 million cap on federal highway emergency money will be lifted. That will help the state rebuild several roads washed away by recent floods. Representative Cory Gardner said Colorado could get up to $500 million.

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Thursday, Sept. 19

4:02 p.m. - Officials have confirmed a 4th flood-related fatality in Boulder County bringing the storm death-toll up to 7 state-wide.

3:58 p.m. - 201 people are currently listed as missing.

10:08 a.m. - The man whose body was pulled from Sand Creek in southeast Colorado Springs on Sept. 16 has been identified as James Nelson Bettner, 47. The coronor has ruled the cause of his death was accidental drowning.

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Wednesday, Sept. 18

5:12 p.m. -  The Colorado Springs Disaster Assistance Center will open Thursday, Sept 19, at 12 p.m. at Cañon Elementary School, located at 1201 West Cheyenne Road. Hours of operation: Thursday:  Noon - 6:00 p.m., Friday:  9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m., Saturday: 9:00 a.m. - Noon.

4:38 p.m. - CO Highway 194 is open in both directions north of La Junta.

3:17 p.m. - Cheyenne Mountain Dist. 12: Cañon Preschool will reopen on a normal schedule beginning Thursday, September 19.

3:13 p.m. - The number of unaccounted for individuals has fallen to 197.

1:54 p.m. - Below is the text of a news release from Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station:

By order of the CMAFS Installation Commander: 
All mission and non-mission essential personnel will report to CMAFS as normal Thur, 19 Sep. Upper parking lot will be available in the bldg 100 and 101 areas. 
Personnel coming to duty inside the mountain will process through bldg. 100 as normal and take the shuttle in from that point. Pedestrian traffic in and out of the portal is forbidden.
Be advised that speed limit is lowered to 15 mph at certain marked areas and there remains safety concerns in the area. All personnel should take extreme caution and abide by all safety notification and direction of first responders.


11:26 a.m. - Below is an initial list of flood damage to El Paso County Roads from the recent storms. The total initial and approximate estimated cost for flood damages from the recent storms is $1,850,000.

Old Stage Road ($800,000)
The mountain gravel road saw a total washout over about a half-mile section, including ditches, culverts and road base and subgrade.  Washouts along the County-maintained portion of the gravel road may also have damaged underground and overhead utilities and created hazardous trees within the right-of-way.
 
Rock Creek Canyon Road ($250,000)
A 300-feet section of low-grade paved road alongside a stream was destroyed when rushing floodwater overflowed the stream bed and washed out the surface of the road, leaving the road impassable and stranding more than a dozen residents.  Temporary repairs allowed temporary ingress/egress to the residents.
 
Spruce Lane/Wind Dance Lane (Approximately $200,000)
Along Spruce Lane an approximately 300-feet section was damaged at the edge of the asphalt pavement and ditch line. Floodwater may also have damaged the storm drain inlet at the intersection of Wind Dance Lane.
 
Paseo Corto (Approximately $250,000)
Damage to gravel surface and ditches/slopes over an approximately 300-feet section.  Some private accesses restored.  
 
Academy Bridges (EPC 4099-02.36L and EPC 4099-02.36R) (Approximately $250,000)
These bridges are over Fountain Creek and have experienced serious impacts from the recent storms.  Scour is increasing at the foundations of these structures causing concern for a potential catastrophic failure.
 
Golden Lane Bridge (EPC 2196-00.00) (Approximately $100,000)
This structure is located over Fountain Creek in Old Colorado City.  Repair work is needed to repair abutment due to the recent storm events.

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Tuesday, Sept. 17

6:09 p.m. - The statewide fatality number has been reduced to 6.
The two missing and presumed dead individuals from Larimer County are now listed under missing numbers to more accurately reflect their status

5:43 p.m. - The city of Colorado Springs says flooding has caused $10 million in infrastructure damage and that 89 homes have experienced significant damage.

Closed Roads:
  • Cheyenne Road between Mayhurst Ave. and Hulda Lane
  • Camp Creek Road between the tunnels
  • South Cheyenne Canyon Rd-Closed (significant debris and sediment on the road OUTSIDE of Seven Falls entrance). City Streets will continue to work in the area Wednesday.
Impact to city parks:

Greenway Trail (South of Nevada Ave and Treemont St to Polk St are closed)

  • Sinton Trail- closed
  • North Cheyenne Canyon-closed (including Lower Gold Camp Rd)
  • Palmer Park -closed
  • Harlan Wolfe Park- closed.
  • Ute Valley Park- open
  • Starsmore Discovery Center- open
  • Rock Ledge Ranch- open
  • America the Beautiful Park- open
  • Red Rock Canyon Open Space-open
  • Garden of the Gods – open (Foothills Trail, north of Gateway Rd is closed)
  • Seven Falls- closed


12:17 p.m. - Voluntary evacuations along Cheyenne Creek in Colorado Springs have been lifted.

10:56 a.m. - Fountain Creek is overflowing into a parking lot in the 1300 block of Manitou Avenue in Manitou Springs.

9:57 a.m. - CO 194 closed north of La Junta due to flooding. No estimated time to reopen.

8:00 a.m. - The number of people unaccounted for in the Colorado flooding has dropped from 1,253 to about 595. In Larimer County, the number has dropped from 260 to 197.

6:00 a.m. - New evacuations ordered in Logan County for Town of Crook and some residents north CO 138

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Monday, Sept. 16

9:45 p.m. - Boulder Office of Emergency Management statistics for the day's activities:

    111 damaged homes
    119 destroyed homes
    28 damaged commercial
    1 destroyed commercial
    1,111 personnel working this situation
    183 currently unaccounted people
    567 total people who were once "unnaccounted for" have now been contacted
    215 air rescues
    11 ground rescues
    120 pet rescues

7:17 p.m. - Newly released statistics from the Colorado Office of Emergency Management:

5:51 p.m. - The flood warning for the Arkansas River at Avondale has been canceled. The river never reached flood stage and is not expected to.

3:54 p.m. - A flood warning continues until Wednesday for the Arkansas River at La Junta. It is expected to crest at 12.2 feet. At that level, agricultural flooding can be expected. Everyone is urged to stay away from the river banks because they are loose and can easily give-way.

3:32 p.m. - Cheyenne Mountain Dist. 12: Cañon School will be closed on Tuesday September 17 while flood repairs continue.

3:16 p.m. - North Cheyenne Canyon Park is closed until further notice because of unsafe conditions caused by rain and flash flooding. A damage assessment will need to be completed before determining when it might be safe to reopen the park.

2:44 p.m. - The Colorado Springs Police Department says a body was found in the west fork of Sand Creek near Platte and Wooten this morning. An autopsy is pending.

2:39 p.m. - Newly released statistics:

  • Fatalities: 7
  • Reported Missing: 658 (approximate and changing throughout the day - local counties have most current numbers)
  • Evacuated Persons: 11,750
  • Shelter Population Total: 528
  • Shelters: 36 Shelters open
  • Residential Structures: 17,994 damaged | 1,502 destroyed


2:36 p.m. - If you recently sustained loss or damage due to severe storms, flooding, landslides and mudslides, you may be eligible for disaster aid. Counties that are currently covered by the Major Disaster Declaration are; Adams, Boulder, Larimer, and Weld. To register, call: 1-800-621-FEMA (3362)

12:38 p.m. - CDOT has pushed the rocks off the road and both westbound lanes of highway 24 are now open.

12:28 p.m. - State patrol says the right lane of westbound highway 24 is blocked near Cave of the Winds due to a rock slide. The left lane is open.

12:15 p.m. - A rock slide has been reported in the area of US 24 and Cave of the Winds. We have a team going to check it out.

11:53 a.m. - The Colorado Office of Emergency Management is reporting more than 1,250 people missing statewide, but officials say that estimate is expected to fall when new figures are announced later Monday.

11:45 a.m. - Manitou Avenue remains closed between Crystal Hills Park Road and the U.S. 24 interchange in Manitou Springs.
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Sunday, Sept. 15

8:00 p.m. - Evacuations ordered in parts of Longmont due to flooding.

6:45 p.m. - The city of Colorado Springs is working on repairs on the north end of the city including a sinkhole repair on Vickers near Rangewood and another sinkhole on Flintridge near Austin Bluffs & Academy.

4:32 p.m. - The latest state-wide statistics from the Colorado Office of emergency management.

Fatalities: 5
Reported Missing: 1,253 (approximate and changing throughout the day)
Evacuated Persons: 11,700
Shelter Population Total: 1,872
Shelters: 26 Shelters open

Residential Structures: 17,494 damaged | 1.502 destroyed


4:15 p.m. - Highway 24 was closed by CDOT and State Patrol because of falling rocks and standing water on the road near Ridge Road.

3:30 p.m. - CDOT crews working on clearing culverts near Highway 24 through Ute Pass of debris to prevent flooding. The highway remains open to traffic.

2:15 p.m. - CSPD tweet: CSFD Heavy Rescue conducting vehicle rescue at Seiferd Blvd & Date.

1:59 p.m. - CSPD tweet: Avoid Academy @ Half Turn, 1 blk North of N. Carefree- street flooding.

1:53 p.m. - CSPD tweet: Avoid Powers@ Barnes, Dublin @ Montarbor, Rangewood @ Vickers, Date @ Siferd due to street flooding

1:29 p.m. - From CSPD: CSFDconducting water rescues near Farmcrest Palmer Park east of Academy. Penrose Elementary in Briargate .98" in under an hour in USGS rain gauge.

1:27 p.m. - The eastbound offramp from Highway 24 to Manitou Springs is closed temporarily while crews remove debris and floodwater from the roadway.

1:26 p.m. - CDOT says 30 highway bridges have been destroyed and 20 have been damaged by flooding statewide.

1:10 p.m. - The interesctions of Chelton and Santa Rosa and Galley and Bowser in Colorado Springs are closed due to flooding.

12:58  p.m. - A flash flood warning has been issued for most of the city of Colorado Springs until 4 p.m.

9:00 a.m. - The Larimer County Sheriff's Office says 482 people are unaccounted for (people were added and removed from the list overnight), and investigators say a 6th person is presumed dead.

National Guard officials say most of the 1,750 people and 300 pets rescued as of Saturday night have been in Boulder and Larimer counties.

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Saturday, Sept. 14

8:00 a.m. - The following is a current list of highway updates:

Recent Highway Openings

SH 8 between Morrison and U.S. 285

New Updates/Closures

U.S. 34 from Granby to Estes Park: Essential travelers only
U.S. 34 from MP 114 to Wiggins (I-76) east of Greeley
U.S. 85 from SH 52 to County Road 49 in Greeley
Ongoing Closures in Northern Colorado
I-25 southbound from Wyoming to Harmony Road
I-25 northbound between Harmony Road and SH 14
I-25 northbound /southbound ramps to State Highway 119
U.S. 34 between Glade Road and Estes Park
U.S. 36 between Boulder and Estes Park
US 85 from 42nd in Evans (MP 264.5) to County Road 44 in LaSalle (MP 258.5)
U.S. 287 at Big Thompson River in Loveland from SH 402 to 5th Street
U.S. 287 in Fort Collins from MP 347 to MP 348
US 287 from MP 307 (Isabella) to MP 310 (SH 52)
SH 7 between Lyons and Estes Park
SH 14 between Ted's Place and Walden
SH 60 at CR 46
SH 66 between 53rd Street (Longmont) and Lyons
SH 66 between CR 13 and CR 19
SH 119 between Boulder and Nederland (Boulder Canyon)
SH 119 between County Line Road and I-25
SH 170 from SH 93 to El Dorado Canyon State Park
SH 257 between SH 60/Milliken to US 34
SH 392 from I-25 (Larimer County Road 5) east to 17th Street in Windsor

Ongoing Closures in the Denver Metro Area

I-70 eastbound off-ramp to Quebec Street
SH 72 between 72nd and 80th avenues
SH 72 between SH 93 and SH 119 (Coal Creek Canyon)
SH 83 (Parker Road) between Florida and Jewell avenues

3:46 a.m. - The Boulder Office of Emergency Management says 181 people are unaccounted for in the flood area.
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Friday, September 13, 2013 

9:33 p.m. - The Boulder Office of Emergency Management says 172 people are unaccounted for in the flood area.

8:40 p.m. - In response to a request from civilian authorities, Fort Carson has sent three CH-47 Chinook helicopters, three UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters and one command and control Blackhawk to assist the Colorado National Guard with rescue efforts near Lyons.

6:57 p.m. -

Initial damage assessment from the city of Colorado Springs.

  • Gold Camp Road: extensive damage
  • Cheyenne Road: extensive damage
  • Gold Camp and Camp Creek: pond and sidewalk damage
  • Stratton Bridge: structural damage
  • Various washouts amongst City Parks, Trails, and Greenways  (including roadway, walkway, and pathway damage)
  • Multiple homes and residences along Cheyenne Creek
  • Remaining road closures: Stratton at Cheyenne Road (due to bridge damage, this will remain closed until further notice)


6:51 p.m. - Unfilled sandbags are available for pick up at the following locations:

Sand is available for pick up at the Wilson United Methodist Church parking lot (6460 Flying W Ranch Road).

6:49 p.m. - The Colorado National Guard has rescued 550 civilians by ground and air as of 6 p.m. on 9/13/13.

6:42 p.m. - Cheyenne Road is now open at Cresta.

5:17 p.m. - The Red Cross shelter at First Presbyterian Church in Colorado Springs has now closed.

4:24 p.m. - Springs Rescue Mission can shelter 30 homeless people who have been displaced by flooding from 9/13 to 9/15 at 25 W. Las Vegas Street.

4:23 p.m. - Gov. John Hickenlooper today signed an Executive Order to declare a disaster emergency due to the flooding affecting 14 counties: Adams, Arapahoe, Broomfield, Boulder, Denver, El Paso, Fremont, Jefferson, Larimer, Logan, Morgan, Pueblo, Washington and Weld.

The order authorizes $6 million for the Disaster Emergency Fund from the General Fund to pay for flood response and recovery.

4:12 p.m. - In Boulder County, three people have died and 80 are missing a result of this week's flooding.

3:21 p.m. - 295 stranded people are being airlifted out of Jamestown in Boulder County.

2:43 p.m. - Flooding has closed Interstate 25 from north of Denver to Cheyenne, a 90-mile stretch. Three major rivers - Big Thompson, St. Vrain, and Poudre - normally flow under the highway in northern Colorado, but flood waters have pushed over the top of the roadway in some locations.

2:42 p.m. - Rocky Mountain National Park is currently closed.

2:39 p.m. - In northern Colorado, homes in Lyons are dangling from cliffs. In the Denver Metro Area, evacuations in Commerce City have now been lifted.

12:30 p.m. - Motor Way between Nevada and Tejon has been reopened.

12:30 p.m. - Fountain Creek Flood Warning is lifted.

6:10 a.m. - All power is restored in Fountain. A downed power line, knocked over due to a flooding creek caused the outage, Fountain utilities said. Crews will repair the line during the day on Friday.

5:30 a.m. - Fountain Utilities said three to four thousand customers are without power in the Countryside and Eagle Side neighborhoods. Fountain Fort Carson High School and Jordahl Elementary are without power because of the outage. Crews hope to have power restored in two hours.

5:01 a.m. - Colorado State Patrol said Highway 24 is open, one lane, in both directions.

2:51 a.m. - Due to heavy rains and flooding throughout the region, Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station is closed Friday, September 13. This closure is in effect for mission essential and non-mission essential personnel.

2:11 a.m. - CSPD in process of reopening Hwy 24 from 8th St to 31 st and Colorado Ave to the Manitou border.

12:37 a.m. - Peterson Air Force Base - Delayed reporting is in effect Friday, September 13, for military and civilian personnel assigned to Peterson AFB who live west of 21st Street and Highway 24, and in Cascade, Chipita Park, Green Mountain Falls, Woodland Park and Manitou Springs. Regardless of duty hours, personnel should not report to their duty stations before 9:30 a.m. If conditions warrant a status change, information will be updated on Peterson Air Force Base's Facebook page, local radio and TV stations, and the Snow Call line at 556-snow. All personnel are reminded to assess their local commuting concerns and address individual conditions with their supervision. Conditions will vary widely for this storm across the Front Range, and personnel safety is a top concern for each person. For information about Cheyenne Mountain Air Force Station, call 474-3333.

12:26 a.m. - Schriever Air Force Base - 2 hour delay for military and civilian personnel who live west of 21st Street and Hwy 24, Cascade, Chipita Park, Green Mountain Falls, Woodland Park and Manitou Springs.

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

11:37 p.m. - Cheyenne Mountain Dist. 12 - Skyway Elementary and Cañon School closed due to flooding.

10:46 p.m. - Fort Carson: 2 hour delay for all military and civilian personnel who live west of 21st Street and Hwy 24, Cascade, Chipita Park, Green Mountain Falls, Woodland Park and Manitou Springs.

10:30 p.m. - The Red Cross shelter at 103 Pawnee Ave. in Manitou Springs has closed. The shelter at 105 N. Weber Street in Colorado Springs remains open.

10:29 p.m. - Anyone needing shelter for their pet animals can take them to Humane Society at 610 Abbot Ln, personnel on scene to receive.

9:57 p.m. - 19th and Uintah is now open.

9:56 p.m. - 30th St from W Fontanero St north to Mesa Rd is now closed.

9:48 p.m. - CSPD closing Naegle Rd at 21st St for street flooding.

9:39 p.m. - A KRDO NewsChannel 13 viewer reports Gold Camp Road is blocked by falling boulders.

9:31 p.m. New flooding road closures in Colorado Springs: SB S. Nevada at Las Vegas, NB S. Nevada at Brookside, WB Arvada at Wahsatch and EB Motorway at Tejon. 

9:20 p.m. - US 24 is now closed between Colorado Springs and Green Mountain Falls.

9:19 p.m. - President Barack Obama has approved federal disaster assistance for flooding in Boulder, El Paso and Larimer counties.

8:57 p.m. - Creek water out of banks & on roadway at Motor Way bet. Nevada and Tejon St. CSPD closing the area.

8:48 p.m. - There is a report that Cheyenne Creek is out of its banks at Woodburn.

8:45 p.m. - Evacuations are underway along St. Elmo Street in southwest Colorado Springs. Viewers report receiving emergency notification calls from the Broadmoor and Skyway areas.

8:15 p.m. - A second Red Cross Shelter has opened at First Presbyterian Church, 105 North Weber Street, in Colorado Springs.

7:51 p.m. - Scanner: Barricades being requested at Colorado and 30th to assist shutting down.

7:39 p.m. - We are currently experiencing a My HD Doppler outage. Tech support estimates it will be repaired in approx. 1 hour. Click here for a live stream of Live HD Doppler Radar.

7:16 p.m. - Westbound US 24/Cimarron Street is now closed at Sierra Madre Street, east of I-25 in Colorado Springs.

7:13 p.m. - The Irondale neighborhood in Commerce City is being evacuated after a dam at the Rocky Mountain Arsenal failed.

7:11 p.m. - The National Weather Service says that homes on Leigh Lane in Southmoor may be threatened by flooding when Fountain Creek reaches 12.0 feet. 

7:08 p.m. - A flood warning has been issued for Fountain Creek at Colorado Springs through Saturday Morning. Flood stage for Fountain Creek at Colorado Springs is 8.0 feet. It is expected to crest at 12.4 feet

7:01 p.m. - Westbound Highway 24 is now closed at I-25.

6:50 p.m. - Southwestern El Paso County / Colorado Springs are under a flash flood warning until 9:30 p.m. 

6:46 p.m. - Westbound US 24 is now closed at 8th Street.

6:07 p.m. - There is a water rescue underway right now at 19th and Uintah in Colorado Springs.

5:55 p.m. - Westbound US 24 and Colorado Avenue are now closed at 31st Street.

5:53 p.m. - Scanner: Water is flowing on Manitou Avenue and it is being shut down again.

5:51 p.m. - A flood advisory has been issued for Calhan, Ellicott, Peyton, Ramah, Truckton, Yoder, & surrounding area until 7 p.m.

5:49 p.m. - Traffic cameras show high water at US 24 and 31st on the west side of Colorado Springs. The Colorado Springs traffic center reports similar conditions at 26th and 21st.

5:49 p.m. - The Colorado Springs Police Department is now on accident alert.

5:45 p.m. - 19th and Uintah in Colorado Springs is now closed due to flash flooding.

5:41 p.m. - Colorado Springs Police and Fire tweet that residents are urged to stay home tonight if at all possible.

5:31 p.m. - Highway 24 is now closed through Ute Pass again.

5:27 p.m. - A flash flood warning has been issued for West-Central El Paso County until 8 p.m.

4:42 p.m. - CU Boulder will be closed again Friday. KMGH reports as many as 25% of the buildings on campus experienced flood damage.

3:49 p.m. - The Colorado Springs flash flood victim has been identified as 54 year old Danny Davis. His family has been notified according to police.

2:38 p.m. - Three high-clearance, armored vehicles are heading out to the mountain community of Lyons, where residents have been trapped by flooded roads. The Red Cross says about 200 people have taken shelter in a school there

2:19 p.m. - C.S.F.D. urges parents, teachers, and other adults to talk to kids and make sure they don't seek cover from rainfall underneath a bridge or overpass on their way home from school this afternoon. The consequences could be deadly.

2:05 p.m. - The governor's office now says Coast Guard helicopters are not coming to Colorado, however National Guard helicopters are on stand-by.

1:11 p.m. - Conditions are improving in southern Colorado right now. StormTracker 13 Meteorologist Marty Venticinque says another around of heavy rain is expected this evening.

1:06 p.m. - Governor John Hickenlooper has signed a disaster declaration related to the flooding across the state. The DOD is sending Coast Guard Helicopters to help as well. By far the most destruction has occurred in Boulder County and parts of the Denver Metro Area thus far.

12:58 p.m. - The Flash Flood Warning for El Paso County has expired. Highway 24 remains closed between Manitou Springs and Cascade.

12:54 p.m. - WB Colorado Ave. is now open at 31st Street. Manitou Avenue is now open in Manitou Springs. Highway 24 remains closed.

12:54 p.m. - Howbert Elementary in Colorado Springs is closing for the day due to the flood danger. Parents should pick up their kids. Kids who are not picked up will be bussed to Holmes Middle School.

12:40 p.m. - Garden of the Gods Park is closed due to the risk of flooding.

12:33 p.m. - Colorado Avenue is closed at 31st Street in Colorado Springs until further notice.

12:25 p.m. - At 12:00 PM on September 12th, the Colorado Springs Police Department's Public Safety Communications Center has moved to priority dispatching only. This adjustment was due to flooding issues and concerns throughout Colorado Springs. This notification will be updated when dispatching returns to normal status.

11:54 a.m. - Flooding is occurring in Waldo Canyon Flooding is expected in Manitou Springs within the next 20 to 30 minutes.

11:49 a.m. - The El Paso County Sheriff's Office is driving through Manitou Springs warning residents to evacuate via loud speaker.

11:47 a.m. - S. Cheyenne Creek is reportedly out of its banks in southwest Colorado Springs.

11:44 a.m. - The city of Longmont has ordered mandatory evacuations for the Southmoor Park neighborhood.

11:39 a.m. - Fountain creek is rising rapidly in Manitou Springs. Roads in the town are being shut down and access from the outside is being limited.