Mason Valley residents prepare for flooding this week

YERINGTON, Nev. (KOLO) - People in Yerington and parts of the Mason Valley prepared all weekend for possible flooding, and it appears the timetable has shifted slightly.

A few days ago, community leaders thought the high water levels could take place Monday night into Tuesday morning.

Now, the water levels are expected to rise Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, and the community is preparing for the worst.

"I will kind of believe it when I see it, but it is better to be ready," said Robert Butterfield of Yerington.

Residents filled sandbags so they can get ahead of possible flooding when the Walker river hits major flood stage.

"I hate to be the only one on the block that got flooded because I was too lazy to get out and get some sandbags," said Paul Ragland of Yerington.

Lyon County Manager Jeff Page gives Yerington and Mason Valley residents an A+ when it comes to preparation.

"People have done a phenomenal job in taking care of their homes, neighbors and businesses," said Page.

He says local and state agencies have done a great job in helping the community get ready.

Over the last five weeks, the Walker River Irrigation District has been working to contain the area where the water came into the community in 1997.

"What we are concerned about is this corner. You can see where there is a natural opening. This is down by three and a half feet. We built all of this up, so if the river comes through it doesn't blow out here and heads towards town," said Page.

He says the water levels are not expected to rise as quickly as in 1997, but the water will remain in the area for a few more days than it did that year.

Miller Lane, which is north of Yerington, could be closed because the water is expected to be sent there.

Page says plans are in place should community bridges be impacted. Both sides of the river will have emergency resources.

"We are not worried about them (bridges) washing away. It's just that we get water over them, then it makes it challenging to get resources in and out," said Page.

Page says cleaning out drainage systems and making sure people have sandbags is the best defense against potential flooding.