Tribune correspondent Calvin Bratt shot these photographs of the recent flood. As of late Wednesday, water levels continue to recede throughout Whatcom County.

Rescue efforts turned to recovery and clean-up. There are still approximately 100 people being housed in one of two shelters in the Lynden area: North County Christ and King and Sonlight Community Church.

The following is from a Whatcom County Sheriff's Office media release:

Road impacts continue:

Certain county roads remain closed for a variety of reasons, including flooded waterways, standing water, debris, and failed pavement.

Closed roads that appear to be drivable may have been compromised; there may be damage under the pavement, or other things not visible or obvious.

Whatcom County Public Works is assessing roads and bridges over the next several days as waters recede.

Some damaged areas could remain closed for an extended period of time. 

  • As of 5:00 pm on Wednesday, all roads to and from the Lummi Peninsula remain closed.
  • The Whatcom County Public Works Department will close Lake Whatcom Boulevard between Lake Louise Rd and Cain Lake/South Bay Rd* at 8:30 am on Thursday, Nov. 18, for emergency culvert repairs. This closure will continue until repairs are completed. Crews will not know the extent of the damage until repair work begins. Crews will endeavor to reopen the road the same day if possible, but a multi-day closure may be needed if damage is extensive.

Lake Whatcom Boulevard detours:

• Southbound traffic should follow detour signs via Cain Lake Road to Interstate 5; Northbound traffic should follow detour signs via Lake Louise or Lake Whatcom Blvd. *see attached map

  • PSE will close N. Lake Samish Drive overnight, 6 pm to 6 am, November 18-19 for urgent repairs caused by the recent landslide in the area. Expect the road to be closed from Prescott Lane to the Interstate 5 Southbound on-ramp at 1215 N. Lake Samish Drive. Flaggers will be on-site to assist drivers at both closure points. 

Additional information:

  • Do not attempt to drive across standing water or on roads that have been closed.
  • Please limit travel in the county to essential trips only.
  • Call 911 for flood-related emergencies. Do not call 911 for non-emergencies.
  • To report non-emergency flood impacts please leave a message at (360) 788-5311. 
  • To report non-emergency road impacts, call (360) 778-6400.
  • County roads closed due to storm flooding are being posted at this link.
  • State highway roads and impacts are posted at this link.

How the public can help:

The most effective way to support the community members affected by flooding is by donating through Whatcom Community Foundation’s Resilience Fund. Currently, there is a matching fund made possible by local donors and Puget Sound Energy.

As a result, anyone who donates to the Whatcom Community Foundation’s Resilience Fund this week will have their gift matched dollar for dollar, up to a combined total of $115,000. To contribute, click here

Next steps:

Additional information on how to work with disaster recovery entities like FEMA will be published in the coming days.

Anyone who experiences damage associated with this flood event should keep as much documentation as possible, including taking photos and saving receipts.