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Current Incidents

Information about major emergencies in Washington County, Oregon.

Resources for impacted individuals

The severe winter weather from 1/12-1/17 resulted in thousands of power outages, hundreds of downed trees, and considerable property damage. Below is a list of resources and information for winter storm impacts.

Fix storm damage to home, business or property
  • Take pictures to document the damage, then make temporary repairs, such as boarding up windows or tarping the roof, to prevent further damage
  • Understand your policy, including coverages and deductibles BEFORE you hire anyone to work on your property.
  • Contact your insurance company to report a claim
  • Some repairs may need building permits. Work with your contractor to apply for and receive a building permit before beginning repairs. ​​​​​
  • Check out the business before you work with them. Pages 6-7 of Department of Consumer and Business Services' guide on avoiding disaster scams lists phone numbers to call and website databases to can visit to verify that a landscaper, contractor, business, or lawyer is legitimate.   
  • Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDL)​​​​​​ for small businesses: 
    • Washington County has been included in a Small Business Administration (SBA) Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) declaration for the January winter storms.
    • Washington County small businesses that suffered economic losses due to the storm (for example, resulting from closures, power outages, water damage) are eligible for low interest SBA loans through the EIDL program.
    • Apply online or receive additional disaster assistance information at SBA.gov/disaster
      • The deadline for applications is November 8, 2024.
    • If you have questions about SBA’s disaster loan program, the application process or need help completing the application contact the virtual business recovery center. Open Monday – Friday - 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at [email protected] or (916) 735-1531

Replace SNAP Benefits

Replacements allowed when:

  • The food was purchased with SNAP benefits.
  • The food was destroyed in a household misfortune AND
  • You report the loss within 10 days*

*For this incident, since the power has been out for several days, and food does not immediately spoil in a power outage. The 10-day period starts when individual considers food to be destroyed/spoiled.

What is needed to receive replacement SNAP benefits:

  • Submit the DHS 349 D form or a signed statement with the following information:
    • What caused the food to be unusable (e.g., “extended power outage”)
    • Date the food was destroyed
    • List of destroyed food items and their cost
    • Proof of the loss or misfortune
      • For this incident, if you receive power from PGE, proof can be reporting your zip code.
      • If you don’t receive power from PGE, proof can be a letter or email from your landlord or power company confirming when the power went out.
      • For houseless individuals, report the zip code where you spend majority of your time.

How to report a loss of your SNAP purchased food:

  • Call 800-699-9075
    • This phone number can support non-English Speaking callers
    • If you call to report the loss, the call taker will collect all the necessary information and then you would provide your proof and affidavit (written confirmation).
  • Visit your local ODHS office
    • Recommended if you speak ASL so you can be connected with video ASL translation
  • Email: [email protected]
    • Recommended so there is a physical receipt/documentation of request
  • Submit form OR signed statement with all required information online to an ODHS office:

DHS 349 D Form

Fix broken water pipe

If you currently have a broken water pipe in your home

  1. Locate your emergency water shut-off valve (usually in your basement, garage, or crawl space) and turn off your water by turning the handle to the left until it is snug.
    1. If you do not have a shut-off valve (many apartments, manufactured homes, and older homes do not), call your water provider to turn off your water at the street.
  2. Turn on all of your faucets and flush your toilet(s) to drain the rest of the water from your pipes .
  3. Document the damage by taking pictures with your phone or camera for your landlord and/or insurance claim before doing any cleanup.

Who is responsible for fixing broken water pipes?

Burst pipes inside your home or yard are your responsibility. You will need to contact a plumber and then your homeowners or renters insurance provider. Burst pipes outside your home or in the street is the responsibility of your water provider – call them to report an issue. If you're unsure who your provider is, you can look them up.

Read more about emergency water shut off

Downed trees

There were an unprecedented number of fallen trees on county-managed streets and roads resulting from the high winds starting Jan. 13. Crews always prioritize life safety by clearing at least one travel lane so people can get through. By clearing just one lane, crews are able to open lanes on more roads sooner. Our crews cannot clear fallen trees involving power lines until our PGE partners have made repairs and/or cleared the power lines.  

Now that weather conditions have improved, crews will return to clear any remaining travel lanes. This may involve: 

  • Making sure sufficient sight distance is maintained and signs are visible. 
  • Cutting large trees into rounds that will be left on the roadside for people to use or dispose of.  
  • Clearing sidewalks, bike lanes and areas where debris is impacting travel. 

This process may take several weeks. Depending on the size of the tree and/or extent of the debris, some locations may require several trips.

Please be patient. As always, we continue to focus on life safety, while working as efficiently as possible. We may hire local contractors to help expedite clean up where possible. 

To report fallen trees impacting one or more travel lanes on county-managed streets and roads: 

  • Online: Complete a Request a Road Service form. 
  • By phone 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday: Call 503-846-7623 (Road Maintenance) 
  • By phone after 5 p.m. and on weekends/holidays: Call 503-629-0111 (Washington County nonemergency) 
  • Email: [email protected].

NOTE: Report fallen trees only once. Do not report locations we’ve already worked on. We will return to finish clearing the travel lanes, sidewalks and bike lanes as soon as possible. 

Property owners 

Removing any trees and related debris on private property is the responsibility of the property owners. Property owners are also responsible for debris in the right-of-way adjacent to their properties that is not blocking sight distance, signs or access.

NOTE: Visit Washington County's What to Recycle and Where tool to learn about disposal options for small branches (less than 4 inches in diameter and less than 36 inches long), leaves and other yard debris. Contact an arborist for larger tree limbs and fallen trees. Learn more: Yard and Storm Debris Solutions

Property owners are also responsible for maintaining or removing damaged or leaning street trees adjacent to their properties. In unincorporated Washington County, property owners can plant new street trees next to their property without a permit.

Street trees cannot impact sight distance, signage, utilities or access when fully grown. See Approved Street Trees. A right-of-way permit is required if the planting process impacts traffic.

Agencies and organizations available for help

There are many agencies and organizations who can help.

  • Call 211 or visit 211info.org to connect with local resources. These include childcare resources, utility assistance, food resources, housing and shelter information and more.
  • If you are in need of immediate assistance due to damage to your home, call 1-800-Red-Cross (1-800-733-2767) to speak with their community support liaisons.
  • Feeling overwhelmed, anxious or depressed? The Washington County Crisis Line is answered 24/7 at 503-291-9111.
  • For individuals experiencing homelessness, contact the Community Connect homeless response system. Call 503-640-3263 or email [email protected]
  • If you are looking for a warm place to spend the day, Washington County day centers are operating with extended hours.​​
Avoid disaster-related scams
  • Here are some “red flags” that might help you identify a scam:
    • You were not expecting their communication (for example: they use an unknown number or email, or they contact you even though you haven’t called or emailed anyone about your issue).
    • They claim urgent action is required.
    • The offer seems too good to be true.
    • They ask for bank information, credit card numbers or other very detailed personal information.
  • Social services that are performing legitimate welfare checks will have basic information about you and your situation and will be able to explain how they received your information.
  • It’s always better to be cautious. Legitimate companies and government officials don’t mind your uncertainty. They would rather you be careful.

Read more in the Department of Consumer and Business Services guide on avoiding disaster scams: English | Spanish

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News

Board declares emergency to support winter storm response

The declaration will help the county coordinate with partner agencies and pursue additional resources for responding to the recent snow and ice storms.
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