Rising River Affecting Small Towns

Apr 30, 2019

Some residents of Rapids City have been advised to leave their homes because of continued flooding in the village by the Mississippi River. But so far it's just a suggestion that they evacuate voluntarily.

Village president Harold Mire says First Avenue, which is next to the river, is under water. And people living along the nearby First Avenue A, should be ready to leave at a moment's notice. 

"The longer-term residents are quite familiar with it. They're comparing it to the '93 flood which was a pretty serious flood."

At the '93 level, the water would be at least two feet deep on First Avenue.

He estimates 35 to 40 people are affected by the river so far in Rapids City.

The village has put up Hesco barriers and sandbags around its main sewer lift station on 14th Street, so Mire thinks they're well-protected.  

The Red Cross has opened a shelter in Clinton for flood victims. The Mississippi River is cresting there Tuesday, nearly 6 feet over flood stage.

Chance Kness, Coordinator for Clinton County Emergency Management, says a levee is protecting most of the city of Clinton, but just outside the levee in the north part of town, about half a dozen homes are surrounded, or already have floodwater in them. 

"Water in the basement is dangerous. We've already heard stories this flood season about people wading down into their basement to shut things off which is extremely dangerous."

Also affected is part of Camanche, but Kness says a temporary levee near the marina is holding, so far. 

The Red Cross shelter is located in the Ericksen Community Center in Clinton - it will open at five, and lock the doors at 10 pm.