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Mountain pass highway reopened in Washington state

| January 11, 2022 7:00 AM

NORTH BEND, Wash. (AP) — The main east-west highway in Washington state reopened over the mountain passes after being closed for almost four days due to a winter storm that made travel too dangerous.

Interstate 90 over Snoqualmie Pass reopened Sunday evening. The vital transportation route that connects Seattle with Spokane was made passable again after crews worked for days to clear fallen trees, debris and snow.

There were still flooding concerns in parts of southwest Washington state on Monday.

Southwest Washington has experienced its worst flooding in a decade and some rivers crested at more than 18 feet (5.5 meters) last week, the National Weather Service said. Washington Gov. Jay Inslee issued an emergency proclamation on Friday.

The weather service issued flood warnings Sunday for Grays Harbor and Thurston counties. It said moderate flooding in the Chehalis River was affecting road access to the Chehalis Reservation near Oakville.

In Washington's Grays Harbor County, authorities were searching for a man reported missing after driving into floodwaters in Elma early Sunday, but it wasn't known if the man was swept away or walked out on his own, said Undersheriff Brad Johansson.

The search came after emergency workers said Saturday they had recovered the body of a 72-year-old man whose vehicle was swept away by flooding near Cosmopolis.