Update, 4:20 pm: The U.S. Coast Guard is sending help to Haines, after major landslides and road washouts.
“At this point we are aware that damage has occurred in the town of Haines following the report of multiple landslides in the borough,” said Capt. Stephen White, commander Coast Guard Sector Juneau. “The scope of the damage is unknown at this time but we are proactively moving several assets and personnel to provide assistance to local first responders and the residents who may have been impacted by the landslides.”
A Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Sitka has been launched to assist and the crews of the Coast Guard Cutters Liberty and Anacapa have been ordered to make preparations to sail to Haines. A Coast Guard Station Juneau 45-foot Response boat crew has also launched.
Watchstanders at Coast Guard Sector Juneau were contacted by the Haines Borough Police Department at 1:36 p.m. of the damage and began launching assets at 1:45 p.m.
Update, 3:40 pm: On Tuesday at 1:50 pm, troopers learned of a major landslide on Battery Hill in Haines. One house is destroyed and people are missing. The Alaska Wildlife Trooper from Haines is on scene assisting with evacuating people utilizing the local Trooper vessel. Search and Rescue efforts are currently being coordinated. SEAdogs and Juneau Mountain Rescue have been activated and efforts are being made to get a helicopter out of Juneau to transport the teams to Haines, as the town is cutoff from both the border and the airport.
The Statewide Emergency Operations Center is working on sheltering and other disaster aspects. AST is working with many government and non-government partner agencies to coordinate logistics for getting the people in Haines the help they need.
Many Haines residents are seeking higher ground tonight as waters rise due to torrential rains, and as streets wash out and sinkholes are appearing.
Haines police are using boats to evacuate residents along Beach Road and Lutak Spur Road, where residents were told to head to the beach and shine their flashlights so the rescue boat can see them.
Police advised people not involved with rescue to stay away from Beach Road, and advised people who could to leave the area immediately.
Alaska State Troopers are involved in rescuing stranded residents of from the beach before daylight is lost. There’s one wildlife Trooper in the area.
Those living along Young Road, Mathias Avenue to Picture Point are being advised to conserve water.
In Juneau, areas of Mountainside Estates have been flooded as a severe atmospheric river moves through the region. Haines has received up to 10 inches of rain in the past two days, similar to weather being seen from Ketchikan north. Pelican received a foot of rain, and Hoonah received 10 inches; all are experiencing flooding and washouts.
A state of disaster can typically be triggered at the state level once the local government requests it.
Photo from social media / source unknown.