City Disaster History (In the 1970's)

  • Oct 16, 1962: First house built and occupied in Rio Rancho Estates, the new Amrep Corporation development northwest of Albuquerque.
  • Nov 20, 1974: Rio Rancho celebrated their 5,000th resident.
  • Nov 27, 1974: Multi-casualty incident. Vehicle accident, Highway 528 about one mile south of Highway 44 (Now Highway 550); 3 dead, 6 injured.
  • Aug 16, 1975: Worst flash flood event of past 40 years hit the area. Heavy rains August 12-16 damaged roads. Corrales particularly hard hit with 30 homes damaged. State disaster declaration resulted.
  • July 15, 1976: Major fire, Industrial Park. Some 1,000 bundles of cardboard and hundreds of tires burned at A-1 Recycling Center.
  • Aug 19, 1976: Flash flood washed out the bridge on Highway 528 across Los Montoyas Arroyo. Corrales had 60 homes flooded. An estimated 5" of rain fell west of the built up area. State disaster declaration resulted. (Construction to replace the Highway 528 bridge began March 24, 1977 and the bridge reopened July 28, 1977.)
  • Apr 13, 1978: Wind storm. Winds blew over the brick walls of a building under construction in the Industrial Park. Other damage to trees, fences, etc.
  • Aug 31, 1978: Major fire at condominiums on Country Club Drive. Two units destroyed, 3 damaged, one injury. Damage estimated at $150,000.
  • Apr-May, 1979: The Rio Grande River was at its highest level since the Great Flood of 1929.No impact on Rio Rancho, substantial damage in Corrales.
  • May 20, 1979: Flash flood.More than 1" of rain in less than an hour gouged out 12' deep channels along Sara Road and Meadowlark Lane.
  • Aug 16, 1979: Major fire gutted the Italian-American Building on Sara Road.
  • Dec 15, 1979: Rio Rancho welcomed their 10,000th resident.
NOTE:Items in bold are more serious incidents based on number and severity of injuries or dollar value of property damage.