Tulare County communities bracing as Kings River floods

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Volunteers and staff have filled more than 7,000 sandbags over the last couple of months, but Kings River Golf and Country Club employees say the water from the snowmelt has managed to rise about seven inches in just two days. (KFSN)

Members of the Kings River Golf and Country Club put down their clubs and picked up sandbags, trying to stop water flowing from the top of Pine Flat Dam from destroying their links.

"To see it like this is just a little disheartening," board president Steve Safarjian said.

Safarjian says volunteers and staff have filled more than 7,000 sandbags over the last couple of months, but he says the water from the snowmelt has managed to rise about seven inches in just two days.

"It is very concerning, especially the unknown," he said. "If we do this and lose the battle and the whole golf course floods, at least we can say we tried our best."

John Magnotti is dealing with the same concerns. His house sits just north of the fourth hole green. He now has a backyard resembling a river and a deck covered in water.

"From this morning to this afternoon, the elevations increased by five inches," he said. "Which, if you figure this surface area that you have to cover, it's really something."

The last time the course was severely flooded was in 1969, and pictures show the damage left behind. With a few hundred cubic feet per second added Friday, the Kings River below Pine Flat Dam is under a flood warning until Monday.

And Randy MacFarland with the Kings River Water Association says there is no telling what will happen next.

"It is carrying 14,900 cubic feet per second as it leaves the dam," he said. "It all depends on what the temperature does and how the snow decides to melt."

Related Topics:
newsKings Rivertulare countyfloodingTulare County
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