Idaho Office of Emergency Management
For immediate release January 23, 2017
Contact: Elizabeth Duncan
(208) 258-6595 email@example.com
Idaho Governor Signs Disaster Declaration for Washington County
Excessive snowloads lead to widespread destruction
BOISE – Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter today signed a State Disaster Declaration for Washington County. Weeks of significant snowfall has led to widespread roof collapses in the communities of Weiser, Midvale and Cambridge. The declaration ensures that all necessary state resources will be made available for recovery efforts.
“Our primary concern remains preventing loss of life and injury,” Governor Otter said. “This community is resilient and I can tell you these folks have done an outstanding job of managing some daunting conditions. However, the sheer volume of snow and the number of roof collapses is something that would test the limits of any Idaho community.”
An Idaho Incident Management and Support Team (IMAST) with expertise in command, logistics, finance and planning is in place, and the six-member team will remain in Washington County for at least the next five days. It is working closely with the Washington County Disaster Services office to ensure local priorities are addressed, and at the request of City of Weiser officials it is overseeing snow removal and assessing snowloads on critical infrastructure buildings.
“Families, businesses, and individuals in Washington County have endured more than most people could imagine. We want everyone in these communities to know that we will do whatever we can to provide assistance as quickly and efficiently as possible,” said Brad Richy, Deputy Chief of the Idaho Office of Emergency Management (IOEM). “Attending the emergency Weiser City Council meeting last night with Governor Otter and District 9 Senator Abby Lee provided the opportunity to hear from local leadership and community members on priority issues we can help to address.”
The Idaho Emergency Operations Center (IDEOC) remains activated at Level 1 due to winter storm hazards throughout the state. Ada, Canyon, Cassia, Custer, Gem, Owyhee, Payette, and Washington counties now have disaster declarations in effect.
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The Idaho Office of Emergency Management is a Division of the Idaho Military Division. The services we provide are to facilitate emergency management in Idaho, and to assist neighboring states. The men and women of this Division are dedicated to their mission of protecting the lives and property of the people of Idaho, as well as preserving the environmental and the economic health of Idaho.