President Obama declared Boulder County, Colorado a major disaster Sunday even as authorities there ordered a new round of evacuations ahead of more flooding. Obama also called Governor John Hickenlooper to offer federal support for the flooding that has destroyed homes and roads across the Front Range.
“As response efforts continue, FEMA encourages residents in affected areas to stay informed about changing flood conditions and follow the direction of local officials,” Craig Fugate, a FEMA administrator, said to NBC News. “Let your friends and family know that you’re safe. Impacted residents in Boulder County can start registering for federal assistance today.”
Authorities warned residents of remote Mountain towns that if they didn’t evacuate, they could face weeks without electricity or water, NBC News reported.
Officials said there were 1,254 people who were unaccounted for in Boulder and Larimer Counties, the Post reported. Statewide, four people have died in the floods, which dumped a year’s worth of rain in just 24 hours, the Denver Post reported. Rescue workers expected the death toll to rise as first responders make their way to isolated mountain towns.
“The land is so unstable that it is still dangerous,” said Andrew Barth, spokesman for Boulder County Emergency Management, to the Post.
Forecasters expected between one and two inches of rain Sunday, prompting authorities to re-evacuate towns along the front-range.