After Request from Members of WA Delegation, Federal Government Grants $1 Million in Emergency Relief to Help WA Recover from Severe Storms

Severe storms in November caused heavy damage to roads across the state

Washington, D.C. – Today, Senators Maria Cantwell and Patty Murray, Represenatives Suzan DelBene, Dave Reichert, Jaime Herrera Beutler, Denny Heck, and Rick Larsen applauded the announcement that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has approved $1 million in emergency funding to repair highways and roads damaged by severe storms that took place November 13th through November 18th.

Last week, the members sent a letter (below) to Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx, urging the DOT to quickly approve emergency relief funding to repair heavy damage to roadways throughout Washington state.

Full text of the letter:

November 24, 2015

The Honorable Anthony R. Foxx


U.S. Department of Transportation

1200 New Jersey Avenue, S.E.

Washington, D.C. 20590


Dear Secretary Foxx:

We write to urge you to expeditiously approve Emergency Relief (ER) program funding requested by the State of Washington to make emergency repairs to roadways and address damage caused by severe storms.

On November 18, 2015, Governor Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency for all counties in Washington state as a result of a series of storms that occurred from November 13 through November 18. Heavy rainfall and strong winds resulted in flooding; landslides; fallen, broken, and uprooted trees; stream bank and slope erosion; and flying debris. These storms tragically killed three people, injured many others, and left hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses without power.

As a result of this extreme weather, the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) is working on emergency repairs and other associated storm damage on blocked and damaged roadways. This includes:

·         A sink hole on State Route 542 at milepost 16.3;

·         River scour with erosion undermining State Route 542 at milepost 39.5;

·         Hillside slide on U.S. Route 2 at milepost 44.15;

·         Bridge scour on U.S. Route 2 at milepost 54;

·         River scour at Money Creek on U.S. Route 2 at milepost 46;

·         Large number of downed trees and damaged guardrails on U.S. Route 2 at milepost 47;

·         Small slide on State Route 18 at milepost 6.85;

·         Large number of downed trees on State Route 410 at milepost 27 to 43;

·         Hillside slide on State Route 411 at milepost 6;

·         Downed trees and erosion on Interstate-90 at milepost 45 to 50; and

·         Still to be determined impacts to the local roadway system.

We urge you to grant the State of Washington’s request for $5 million in ER funding to help WSDOT address all of these repairs as quickly as possible. We appreciate your work to ensure our constituents have safe, reliable, and uninterrupted access to these important roadways.

Thank you in advance for your attention to this important request.