Mat-Su Voluntary Evacuation

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by Pearl-Grace Rasmussen

 PALMER --  Jim Sykes is an assembly member who has watched the Matanuska River eat away property in the Palmer Butte over time.

 
"We can see that it is eroding  trees that were striaght last night are leaning over, " said Sykes. "You can see along the bank were small vegitation is cutting the bank."
 
Monday the Mat Su Bourough announced a voluntary evacuation for residents between Mile 13 and 15 of the Old Glenn Highway.
 
Sykes adds, "if water gets in here and the river moves into that channel with any
velocity, then the people down stream might get washed out. That is the reality and everybody understands that."
 
So far no one has evacuated. Yet.
 
Casey Cook, Emergency Services Manager in Palmer says that twith the amount of the erotion we expect over the last few years it's finally caused that revetment to fail.
 
"Old Glenn Highway acts as a berrior between other neighborhoods on the
side of the road."
 
Officals say that this area is very sensitve to erosion and that's what makes it dangerous to homeowners.
 
Water level and turbidity are okay right now, but emergency services is still keeping a close eye on the Matanuska River.
 
"Water is an interesting process and you can't always predict where its
going to go," adds Sykes. "But its very powerful and there is a lot of water moving
right now."