September 8, 2015 Monsoon Storm

September 8, 2015 Monsoon Storm

Early Tuesday afternoon, September 8, 2015, a severe thunderstorm struck the Yuma area, and seriously impacted the Yuma Valley, in particular. As soon as Association operations became aware of the potential influx of large quantities of drainage water from the Yuma mesa into our East Main Canal, the Dispatcher began cutting scheduled flows immediately. Over the course of the storm event that evening, the Association recorded 5.83” of rainfall at it’s headquarters facility at Avenue C and County 15th Street in Somerton, Arizona, with the vast majority falling the first hour and a half.

At approximately 7:00 p.m., our operations center was notified of a breach of the East Main Canal within the East Cocopah Reservation near County 18th Street and Avenue C ½. Association management immediately deployed heavy machinery and employees to the scene, where they worked against the rapid water and debris flow in the housing development to rescue and evacuate residents, alongside tribal officials. Even though earlier mitigation measures were taken to cut water from the East Main Canal, severe inundation from the mesa above occurred, overpowering the mostly empty canal, and breaking the banks in several places along the way.

Due to quick action by Association personnel, tribal law enforcement, and the availability of heavy equipment that could be used to transport residents out of harms way during the event, we are elated to report that nobody was harmed as a result of the breach that occurred last night.

Today, we continue to work with the Cocopah Tribe by providing large pumps to remove pooled water from the surrounding areas, as well as some earthwork measures. Our crews work diligently to repair several breaks that occurred along this stretch of the East Main Canal, some half dozen running between County 16th Street and County 19th Street so that service may be restored as soon as possible.

We are able to fulfill water orders through our West Main Canal, the East Main Canal up to the Central Canal, and the Central Canal. For orders on the East Main Canal below the Central Canal, please check our facebook page often for updates (, though we should be at 100% delivery availability by Monday, September 14, 2015. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we bring our system back on line.

Photos of water inundation from Yuma Mesa inflows, causing canal breaching (click image for high resolution version):

IMG_6403 IMG_6402 IMG_6401 IMG_6400 IMG_6399 IMG_6398 IMG_6397 IMG_6394 IMG_6393 IMG_6390 IMG_6388 IMG_6385 IMG_6381 IMG_6379 IMG_6377 IMG_6375 IMG_6374 IMG_6348


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