Photo courtesy Kenai Peninsula Borough Office of Emergency Management
                                The frozen Kenai River can be seen here Friday near the Big Eddy State Recreation Site in Soldotn.

Photo courtesy Kenai Peninsula Borough Office of Emergency Management The frozen Kenai River can be seen here Friday near the Big Eddy State Recreation Site in Soldotn.

Freezing temperatures prolong ice jam flooding

Cold temperatures are expected to cause the Kenai River to continue freezing upstream.

Cold weather and a prolonged ice jam on the Kenai River have prompted the National Weather Service to issue another flood advisory for the Big Eddy area of the central Kenai Peninsula.

The flood advisory is the result of an ice jam that formed near the Big Eddy State Recreation Site on Sunday, Jan. 5, which caused flooding in the Salmon Run Acres subdivision off Big Eddy Road in Soldotna.

The Kenai Peninsula Office of Emergency Management provided a Jan. 10 update on Facebook of conditions in the area, notifying residents that flooded roads have been barricaded and continue to be monitored. Emergency Manager Dan Nelson said on Thursday that conditions are expected to remain static until warmer temperatures reach the area.

OEM has been working with the National Weather Service office in Anchorage to conduct surveys of the river and determine what actions can be taken to address the ice jam, Nelson said. Heavy equipment has been able to improve conditions along portions of Eddy Lane, but Riverside Drive remains inaccessible, according to the OEM update. Vehicle access is currently not possible past Amiyung Drive on Eddy Lane, according to the NWS flood advisory.

Cold temperatures are expected to cause the Kenai River to continue freezing upstream, Nelson said.

Celine Van Breukelen, senior service hydrologist for the National Weather Service, said that temperatures warm enough to break the ice jam are not forecast for the next week and that the flood advisory will likely remain in place or be extended until the weather changes.

“At this point, as long as temperatures stay well below zero, it’s a waiting game,” Van Breukelen said.

The current flood advisory was issued on Friday at around 11:30 a.m. and will remain in effect until 11:15 p.m. Sunday.

The OEM advised motorists to avoid the flooded areas and continue to take safety precautions when near the river, as significant amounts of water remain under the ice and the ice’s thickness can be deceptive along the river’s edge and in larger lakes.

More in News

Daily school district COVID-19 risk levels: Aug. 12, 2020

Risk levels are based on COVID cases reported in a community and determine how schools will operate.

COVID-19. (Image courtesy CDC)
State reports 68 new cases, 1 new death linked to COVID-19

There are two new cases in Sterling and one in “other North.”

Cook Inlet can be seen through the window of a Ravn aircraft in October 2019. RavnAir Group declared bankruptcy in April. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
Peninsula gets a new Ravn

CEO aims to have flights by September

Murder trial delayed; court suspends jury trials because of pandemic

Henry is accused of killing Mark Matthews, who at 61 years old was found dead on July 28, 2013.

Homer High School. (Homer News file photo)
Back to school

Principals discuss what reopening will look like at local schools

COVID-19. (CDC)
Peninsula reports 8 new COVID cases

Alaska saw another 50 cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, 45 among residents and five nonresidents.

Daily school district COVID-19 risk levels: Aug. 11, 2020

Risk levels are based on COVID cases reported in a community and determine how schools will operate.

Most Read