RIO GRANDE FLOWING STRONG, DAMS NEAR CAPACITY IN HATCH AREA

RIO GRANDE FLOWING STRONG, DAMS NEAR CAPACITY IN HATCH AREA

The Doña Ana County Flood Commission reports that the Rio Grande is flowing at nearly 4,000 cubic feet per second, and three flood control dams near Hatch are near capacity.

The Placitas Arroyo north of Hatch has breached on both sides, and water is flowing rapidly toward the village downtown area. Water levels are likely to rise quickly and significantly.

Residents of low-lying areas are advised to immediately seek high ground, as are residents who live near the Rio Grande or major arroyos that feed the river

All the water in the Rio Grande at this time is flood-related. Both the Caballo and Elephant Butte reservoirs have closed the flow to Sierra and Doña Ana counties.

Capacity river levels are expected to reach Las Cruces and continue south beginning at about 5 p.m. All Doña Ana County residents who live near the Rio Grande are urged to seek higher ground immediately.

A structure fire has been reported at an apartment complex in Hatch, and crews are responding.

No injuries have been reported.

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Reporters seeking more information or interviews may call county Public Information Director Jess Williams at (505) 647-7914.