Cameras to livestream water levels across Utah, Gov. Cox announces
Effective immediately, anyone with an internet connection can go online and check flood levels in Utah rivers and creeks.
Gov. Spencer Cox joined American Fork Mayor Brad Frost and LiveView Technologies CEO Ryan Porter on Wednesday to announce the implementation of 24/7 monitoring cameras to be used across the state.
Cameras currently streaming are located in the Provo River (Kamas), Weber River (Ogden), Ashley Creek (Vernal), Salina Creek (Salina), Chalk Creek (Fillmore) and Pine Creek (Meadow).
Additional cameras will be installed in rivers and creeks in the coming days and weeks, officials said. The livestreams can be viewed at http://floods.utah.gov along with other informational resources. The cameras are not permanent and will be removed after the flood season.
“You can see what’s happening, how high the rivers are in these areas, and just check out what’s going on. This is going to allow us to be ahead of the game,” Cox said. “This is a game-changer for us and we’re lucky to have it here.”
Statewide emergency managers in Salt Lake City will be monitoring the feeds. They will then work with county managers and city officials to manage potential crises. Public works officials and first responders will then use pre-filled sandbags and loose sand to reduce flooding. Cox added that a request for help to the public, on a local level, may me made using social media.
All of the preparation work done in Utah County and across the state is to manage what Cox said is 200%-300% of normal water capacity while in a historic drought. The state’s current water levels, even having seen some snowmelt in early April, are still above record highs set in 1983.
“Once you get into May then there’s a possibility of a 90-degree day, right? What we’re hoping for are some warm days then some cool offs. Now we do have 80-degree days coming, that’s gonna test some of our capacity for sure but it’s supposed to cool off a little bit after that,” Cox said.
While flooding remains a risk, Cox added that he is more concerned, at the moment, with landslides and mudslides. On Saturday, two Draper homes slid off a cliff and into a canyon. Cox urged people, especially those living in mountain passes, if they see rocks falling or land sliding to alert the state and the Utah Department of Public Safety. The state is currently monitoring “about 100” landslides through the Department of Natural Resources, he said.
Cox, Frost and dozens of LiveView employees and their families worked after the public remarks to fill sandbags in the parking lot. According to Frost, the sandbags will be held by the city to use in case of “a rapid deployment-type situation.” The city’s current flood mitigation efforts include removing debris and allowing water to flow.
“The biggest thing is the coordinating efforts that are taking place through multiple agencies of government. When I say unprecedented coordination – the water we have will come through American Fork Canyon — federal, state, counties, the cities have come together,” Frost said. “LVT (LiveView Technologies) has tools that we could call upon that would save us time and manpower — even alert us so we could have live feeds on certain areas. LVT in our community represents the very best of corporate America and how it comes together with cities like American Fork.”
The day doubled as a celebration for LVT in establishing its new headquarters in American Fork. The company has about 450 employees as of now, Porter said, with plans to have around 600 by the end of 2023.
LVT is a Utah-based company specializing in security cameras and live surveillance software working in public and private industries, including maintaining traffic cameras for the Utah Department of Transportation.