Southeast cleans up after Tuesday's heavy rain

dkelly@adn.comJanuary 15, 2014 

Communities and authorities in Southeast Alaska were assessing damage after heavy rains caused landslides and power outages in the region on Tuesday.

Most of Prince of Wales Island was still without internet Wednesday, said Beth Ipsen, Alaska State Troopers spokeswoman. But after the rain stopped by about 3 p.m. Tuesday, the high water began to recede, she said.

The three landslides on the island were cleared by Wednesday morning, officials said. One of the slides blocked traffic on Klawock Hollis Highway and knocked a nearby cabin off its foundations, Ipsen said. The owner of the cabin was standing outside at the time and was not hurt.

In Sitka, a small landslide hit a house and "made it unlivable," said fire chief Dave Miller. No injuries were reported.

Other than that, the weather had little impact on day-to-day living, he said.

"It was affecting us because it rained one heck of a lot," Miller said.

Edward Laske, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Juneau, said the weather service recorded 3.56 inches of rain in Sitka on Tuesday, revising an earlier reported total of 4.01 inches.

Ketchikan reported power outages, but the downed lines were fixed by Tuesday afternoon, said city manager Kurt Duncan.

The National Weather Service also said several boats sank at Point Baker, and a breakwater and float broke free at the dock in Gustavus.

The wettest spot in the region Tuesday was Pelican, a city on the northwest corner of Chichagof Island. Pelican saw 5.74 inches of rainfall -- more than double the previous record of 2.35 inches set in 1983.

Reach Devin Kelly at or 257-4314.


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