Downpour on Sunday floods property in Lemmon Valley

Published: May. 15, 2023 at 5:27 PM PDT
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RENO, Nev. (KOLO) - Cell phone pictures of ditches on Idaho Street show water racing down the street headed toward Lemmon Valley Drive. They were taken Sunday afternoon after a downpour.

The water flow gets more intense as it makes it way from North to South. On Tupelo, residents seemed to get the worst of it, as the water overflows and impacts homes east to west.

“We’ve asked you for 4 years to clean up the mess before something else happened,” Kim Siminoe a Lemmon Valley resident, says of the repeated request to the county. “And you choose not to.”

Siminoe lived through the 2017 flood where the streets were closed, and septic tanks and wells were rendered inoperable.

Because of the rural nature here, many people have livestock including chickens--some were left in standing water. Siminoe says she had to put her dog down during the 2017 flooding after he got into and drank water much like what was left behind from Sunday.

Crews from the county were clearing ditches earlier today in the area. Lemmon Valley residents asked ‘where they were before yesterday’s down pour?’

There is no estimate on the amount of property damage. Siminoe says she and others in this area have ditches running in front of and alongside their homes and have been given a mandate by the county.

“Do not touch the ditches,” says Siminoe of that mandate.

Residents we talked to say they called 311 as directed by the county to report the flooding.

After hours those calls go to “Crisis Support Services of Nevada” who also handles suicide and child abuse calls. Residents say they were left on hold for 20 minutes. One call taker told a Lemmon Valley resident she was in Texas and needed to check and see if the flooded area was in county jurisdiction.

While Washoe County could not confirm that conversation, the call center tells us there is no guarantee on hold times and the calls are taken in the order they are received.