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The original item was published from 1/12/2022 11:09:05 AM to 1/19/2022 12:00:03 AM.

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Sheriff - Emergency Management Daily Briefing

Posted on: January 12, 2022

[ARCHIVED] January 12, 2022 Emergency Management Daily Briefing

Active Incidents

On August 18th, Governor Inslee ordered a statewide mask mandate.  Please see the Governor's website at the following URL:

COVID-19 - The “Proclamation of Emergency” signed by the Whatcom County Executive concerning COVID-19 remains in effect. 

Sever Weather Damage 21-18 Emergency Proclamation by the Governor:  Covers the severe wind and rainstorm event that began on November 12, 2021.


The United States has announced that fully vaccinated, non-citizen travelers with appropriate documentation will be permitted to enter the United States for non-essential travel via land Ports Of Entry and ferry terminals starting on November 8, 2021 and has released this fact sheet to assist those entering the United States.

Canada allows fully vaccinated Americans to visit Canada with these Canadian requirements:

Advisories, Watches and Warning


SR 20 Both Directions. SR 20 eastbound & westbound is closed at Newhalem (MP 121) due to high avalanche danger. An estimated time for reopening has not been determined.

TREE WELL ADVISORY FOR ANYONE TRAVELING INTO THE CASCADES. Tree wells are deep which can prevent someone from escaping and result in suffocation. Always travel in pairs and keep a wide distance from trees.

Inland Weather

Rain continues today but will taper off this afternoon from the west to east leading to showers only for tomorrow.  High temps today will be around 50 degrees with lows tonight dropping only a few degrees.  Tomorrow will  be a few degrees cooler.  Higher elevations will be 5-10 degrees cooler. There will be some wind from the south/southeast today in the 20-25 mph range along the coast with gusts to 40 mph.  Interior parts of the county will see less wind. Sumas will see a breeze from the northeast around 20mph.  Winds will be lighter tomorrow. Expect mostly cloudy skies on Thursday and Thursday night.  While clouds are in the forecast, it appears rain will stay away from the area into the weekend.

The increased rain on top of snow will add to soil instability due to continued saturation; so, the chances for landslides is also increasing.  When traveling through areas known for landslides, stay vigilant.

Rivers and Stream

The Northwest River Forecast Center is showing the Nooksack River remaining below flood stage except for the gauge at Ferndale where it barely crosses the minor flooding threshold for a short while. That doesn't mean roads like River Rd or Slater will not be affected, just that they may and if they are it will be for a shorter duration.  Always check ahead before driving.  More impacts cold occur from water building up in ditches and culverts where snow is still blocking drainage paths water would normally take.  It is difficult to say where each of those locations might be but anytime you are dropping into a lower area or see water spreading out in fields, watch for water pooling and pushing out onto roadways. 

Whatcom County Coastal Weather

A warm front over Western Washington will shift north  into British Columbia this afternoon and into the evening. A weak  cold front will move through the area Thursday morning. High  pressure will build over the area on Friday through Sunday.    Winds.  Today:  SE wind 15 to 25 kt rising to 25 to 35 kt in the  afternoon. Wind waves 2 to 4 ft building to 4 to 6 ft in the  afternoon. Rain in the morning then a chance of rain in the  afternoon. Tonight:  SE wind 20 to 30 kt. Wind waves 3 to 5 ft. A chance of  rain in the evening then rain likely after midnight.   Tomorrow: SE wind 15 to 25 kt easing to 5 to 15 kt in the afternoon.  Wind waves 2 to 4 ft subsiding to 2 ft or less in the afternoon.  Rain in the morning then a slight chance of showers in the  afternoon.    Tomorrow Night:  E wind to 10 kt. Wind waves 1 ft or less. 


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Emergency Management Tips and Reminders

Winter Travel

Winter travel can be extremely dangerous.  Cold temperatures, snow, ice are only a few of the hazards you can encounter when traveling in the the Winter.  Some of the things you should consider are as follows:

Have your car checked to make sure all parts are in good working order.  Tires should have good tread, all lights should be working, and windshield wipers should be changed if they do not provide a clean sweep of moisture on the windshield.

If there is snow on your vehicle, clean as much snow off your vehicle as possible.  Windows should be completely clean for maximum visibility.  Snow left on the hood of your vehicle can blow across your windshield and fog or cloud up inside due to the temperature change (another reason to clean all snow off your vehicle).  Headlights, brake lights, direction lights, etc. should all be clean again to make other drivers see you and know your intentions.

Make sure you have a Winter Safety Kit in you car that contains:  flashlight with extra batteries, cell phone and charger, extra blanket and clothes, high-energy food and water, games to keep children occupied, small shovel, sand or mat for traction if you encounter icy conditions, among other things deemed necessary.

If you are running your car to remain warm, remember to leave a window open to prevent a build-up of carbon monoxide.

Before leaving on a trip, call ahead and let someone know the time you are departing and your route of travel.  Likewise, upon arrival at your destination, let contact know you have arrived.


Information concerning face coverings and other protective actions can be found on the Whatcom County Health Department Website.

These Daily Briefings on Incidents, Advisories, Watches and Warnings, current weather and Emergency Management tips are published Monday through Friday, as well as during times of increased awareness or actual events.

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