False Alarm: Tolt River Dam failure siren accidentally activated Tuesday afternoon in Carnation

According to the King County Sheriff’s Office (KCSO), the Tolt River Dam failure alarm system falsely activated around 11:15AM, Tuesday, July 28th.

The loud alert system and siren notifies residents of dam failures and instructs them to evacuate the area.

One resident said the alarm system went off for at least 10 minutes and caused many to begin leaving the area, creating a temporary traffic bottleneck.

She said once it was determined the alarm was false, fire trucks drove through the area alerting drivers of the false alarm using the trucks’ PA systems.

Locals say the dam failure alarm is usually tested on Wednesdays.

KCSO Sgt. Ryan Abbott said technicians were working on the system when it was accidentally set off. He confirmed it is safe and residents could return to their homes and businesses.

The City of Seattle owns and operates the Tolt Reservoir and dams, which are located about 16 miles upstream from Carnation on the South Fork of the Tolt River.

According to the City of Seattle website, the reservoir stores 57,900 acre-ft of water and supplies 30% of the drinking water for 1.3 million people in the Seattle area.

Tolt River reservoir and Morning Glory spillway. Photo: City of Seattle

Comments

  1. I live in Carnation near the evacuation hill. The siren was running for at least 30 minutes. Everyone was pretty scared.

  2. Scary doesn’t cover the name for it, it was helter skelter. Everyone was was getting into their cars with whatever they had and headed out, speeding I might add. What’s sad is city officials could contact SPU to confirm because nobody answered the TWO emergency phone lines at early afternoon, so it was after lunch time. A total breakdown in process.

Trackbacks

  1. […] The quick rush to leave also caused a temporary traffic bottleneck in the area, local news outlet Living Snoqualmie reported. […]

  2. […] The quick rush to leave also caused a temporary traffic bottleneck in the area, local news outlet Living Snoqualmie reported. […]

  3. […] The quick rush to leave also caused a temporary traffic bottleneck in the area, local news outlet Living Snoqualmie reported. […]

  4. […] The quick rush to leave also caused a temporary traffic bottleneck in the area, local news outlet Living Snoqualmie reported. […]

  5. […] The quick rush to leave also caused a temporary traffic bottleneck in the area, local news outlet Living Snoqualmie reported. […]

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