February 16, 2017

Dairy Farmers Face Flood Fears

 |  By: Anna-Lisa Laca

As more storms move into the Golden State, dairy farmers in the Turlock, Calif. area are preparing to move cows in the event of a flood. Adhering to the mantra, prepare for the worst and plan for the best, producers in the Central Valley gathered yesterday to discuss and evaluate evacuation plans should they be needed.

“Stanislaus County is moving toward a declared state of emergency with over 11,000 cubic feet per second  now being released out of Don Pedro,” Western United Dairymen posted on their Facebook page. As of Wednesday Don Pedro Reservoir was approaching its capacity of 830 cubic feet of water.  “It is a forgone conclusion that dairies on the west side and likely east side of the San Joaquin river will flood,” they said.

A few farmers in the area have already evacuated their cows, moving them to facilities offered by neighbors and friends. The challenge they are meeting is similar to what dairy farmers in any natural disaster face: finding a neighboring farm that can accommodate milking added cows.

A story from local station ABC News 10 reports farmers faced a similar situation in 1997.

For a checklist of flood evacuation and relocation tips, click here.