Thursday, August 12, 2010

Skunk River floods 200 Iowa homes

Adam Belz in the Des Moines Register: The South Skunk River topped the levee at Colfax early Wednesday, inundating neighborhoods on the town's west side, covering streets and parks, and threatening many businesses. More than 200 homes were flooded, Mayor David Mast said.

Boats floated down streets and trailers loaded with sandbags or furniture rumbled through town throughout the day. The worst may be yet to come, officials said. The flood set a record in the town 30 miles downstream from Ames. The previous record was 21.5 feet, set in 1993. The crest Wednesday was 22.5 feet. While the water level dropped 6 inches from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., the National Weather Service predicted a crest of 24 feet by Friday morning.

"Whatever Ames gets, we get 24 hours later," said Pam Weigle, owner of Georgio's, a pizza place surrounded by sandbags a few feet from the floodwater in downtown Colfax. Mast said water pushed over the top of the levee along the west and north side of town about 3 a.m. Wednesday. Neighborhoods near the athletic fields quickly flooded….

A scene in Colfax, Iowa, shot by Billwhittaker, Wikimedia Commons, under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license

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