March, 27th, 2014
Tucked away in the beautiful, rugged Olympic Peninsula coast, severe storms packing high winds, huge waves combined with a rising sea-level have put structures and lives in danger. Yesterday, the Quinault Indian Nation declared a state of emergency for the town of Taholah due to a breach in the seawall.
The seawall was recently reinforced by the Army Corps of Engineers with more than 800 tons of riprap rock. Riprap rock is loose stone that usually serves as a sturdy foundation for breakwater, however, in Taholah, it appears as this was not enough.
The breach of the seawall has so far destroyed a smokehouse, as well as other buildings and properties in the lower village. Quinault President Fawn Sharp has asked Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to declare the portion of Taholah that’s in jeopardy to be declared a federal disaster area so it could receive aid.
Residents in the impacted area have been asked to relocate for the time being, but the order is voluntary. With raising sea levels and climate change occurring, incidents like this will more than likely become more common in the future.
We will keep you posted with any further developments on this Emergency. Also, continue to check our source for the story, Indian Country Today Media Network. Link: http://indiancountrytodaymedianetwork.com/