Coast Guard evacuates 20 campers trapped by floods in Oregon

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By Sergio Olmos

PORTLAND, Ore. – Twenty people trapped by flash flooding at an Oregon recreational vehicle park were lifted to safety on Friday by U.S. Coast Guard helicopters, authorities said.

Torrential showers caused a creek adjacent to the park to overflow near Neskowin, Oregon, about 90 miles southwest of Portland, and stranded some 50 people, according to officials.

Two Coast Guard helicopters, one of them lowering a rescue swimmer to the ground, plucked 20 campers and three dogs from the inundated park and airlifted them to a nearby school, agency officials said.

The other 30 people caught by the downpour declined assistance, Coast Guard spokesman Petty Officer 3rd Class Michael Clark said.

No injuries were reported.

The Coast Guard and Tillamook County emergency personnel were dispatched after rising waters flooded out the only bridge linking the park to the main coastal highway, officials said. Clark said floodwaters also posed the threat of mudslides in the area.

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The National Weather Service in Portland posted flood watch advisories for much of coastal Oregon and Washington state, with reports of 4 to 10 inches of rain falling on parts of the Pacific Northwest.

(Reporting by Sergio Olmos in Portland, Oregon; Writing by Steve Gorman; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)