Flooding Forms a Lake in Lemmon Valley - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Flooding Forms a Lake in Lemmon Valley

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A once dry lake bed in the North Valleys is now completely full and even flooding into some homes.

"So it's just a big bowl, that water's been feeding into from all the areas. And that's why it flooded." Linda Walls now has lake side property in Lemmon Valley. She and her husband bought this home in the 70's, right on the edge of Swan Lake and the typically dry lake bed is still in the flood plain.

Walls said, "We did not know that, we had no clue. We weren't warned of it. Nothing."

The county says that makes sense because it did not have good flood maps until the 1980's.

The Walls' driveway is completely covered in water, about one to two feet. Now, their biggest concern isn't when this water's going to go down, it's if.  Walls said, "The spring runoff, that's what we're worried about."

Dwayne Smith, Director of Engineering/Capital Projects for Washoe County said, "You're going to see that there's a lot of snow still up in the mountain. A portion of it comes ultimately to, Lemmon Valley."

"We'll get to the point where we won't even get to our home." Walls says there are too many systems draining into the lake bed and causing water levels to rise higher than she's seen in her four decades here. "And what they need to do is either dredge it or excavate it."

Smith said, "We've had people ask us questions and say, 'Well, hey you need to dredge out the lake, you know you need to do those things.  There's a lot of challenges with that statement."

For now, the Walls are staying with a friend who lives further away from the water.

The county's says their priority is having emergency access, keeping water out of homes, notifying residents of rising waters and asking them to stay prepared until northern Nevada dries out. Smith said, "We're going to really ask our residents to do the things they feel they need to do to help protect their homes, protect their structures, and we're going to continue to do our job."     

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