City of Loveland Crews Trying to Re-Connect City Split in Two
Loveland was split in two by floodwaters from the Big Thompson River last night, and crews are currently working to reopen north-south access. City fire, police, utilities and public works crews, staged both on the north and south sides of the river, are working to maintain services to residents.
Mobility in the city is also affected by regional road closures, including the shutdown of Interstate 25 between north Fort Collins and Colorado Highway 7 in Boulder County.
Loveland residents are advised not to travel in the river corridor area except in emergency cases. Flows of the Big Thompson have reached the highest levels since the Big Thompson flood of 1976. The floodwaters have spread broadly across the city, but are mostly contained within the zone defined by the 100-year flood maps developed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Residents should avoid fast, high and standing water not only in the river corridor, but along numerous ditches that run through the city, some of which have been breached by floodwaters. The flooded river has also brought debris from upstream, including hazardous materials such as propane tanks and other items that threaten public safety.
Thompson School District schools are closed, and emergency crews are advising parents to keep their children away from the floodwaters.
Loveland’s water and power supplies remain intact. Water utility workers have tested the water quality from the city’s treatment plant at Green Glade Reservoir, that lies above the flooded area, and it is safe to consume.
The city is also collaborating with regional emergency services to evacuate stranded residents of Big Thompson Canyon, where access has been blocked by the collapse of U.S. Highway 34 in several canyon locations.