Residents evacuate areas of Cedar Rapids ahead of flooding

Maj. Gen. Timothy Orr, the adjutant general of the Iowa National Guard, said: "Based on the information Iowa Homeland Security and Emergency Management has shared with the Joint Operations Center, I have made a decision to bring in 11 Iowa National Guard liaisons to work with County Emergency Management Coordinators for early identification of possible National Guard missions, and to anticipate where support may be needed to prevent loss of life and critical infrastructure".

The National Weather Service predicted the Cedar River will crest 23 feet in Cedar Rapids, Iowa's second-largest city, on Tuesday morning.

Over the weekend, volunteers poured into Cedar Rapids from all over Iowa to help fill sandbags to prepare for the community's second "hundred year" flood in less than a decade. They expect it could be a week before people will be able to return home.

Corbett also said that all areas of Cedar Rapids were the subject of efforts to establish flood defense, unlike plans for flood control developed by federal officials that only would have protected the east side of the river. District officials will reevaluate the situation by Wednesday afternoon.

The Associated Press reports city workers and volunteers have worked for days to build a temporary system of levees to hold the floodwater. "It feels good to see the city come together in the midst of something like this, to come together to save wildlife". The deer was stranded in the rushing currents of the Cedar River, according to the Des Moines Register. About 45 acres of green space sit in that area today. The city of Cedar Rapids also tweeted the plea.

But officials are preparing for the worst flooding since 2008.

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In Manchester, along the Maquoketa River 35 miles north of Cedar Rapids, business owners were in despair as rising water submerged Main Street. Most of her furniture was piled onto trailers to move.

The last we heard, they had delivered more than 2,000 much appreciated meals.

Residents in the northeast Iowa town of Palo are being urged not to use water on Sunday because of a sewer line break and flooding in the area. "You hope they work but at the end of the day, there are no guarantees that they will with the power of water", Buelow says. Water levels in those two cities were slightly lower than had been expected, but they still reached levels that were second only to the 2008 flood that devastated the region. That's well below the 2008 record of 27 feet (8.2 meters), but still caused major flooding. At 10:00 a.m. Sunday the stage was 13.6 feet and steady.

"Waters are rising, so please keep in mind to be safe and stay out of flooded areas", Fire Chief Mark English said. "If you don't live there, you can't get in, and quite frankly, when it gets to the point where it's not safe, nobody will be allowed to reenter the flood evacuation zone areas". In addition, a mandatory evacuation was in effect for parts of Palo, and a curfew in the evacuation area had been declared from 8 p.m. Sunday to 6 a.m. Monday.

But some of the main routes into that other town were blocked by flooding. Assistant Blue Earth County Emergency Manager Eric Weller said Sunday that "we were very lucky overnight" that not much rain fell.

  • Sidney Guerrero