WIUM Local
10:39 am
Wed March 10, 2010

Minor Flooding in SE Iowa

Lee County, IA – Lee County Emergency Management Coordinator Steve Cirinna says the Skunk River is flowing out of its banks near the town of Augusta. He says an ice jam is changing the path of the river.

Cirinna says the flood risk is growing because the ice jam, which has been stationary for weeks, is now starting to move downriver.

"Our biggest concern right now is that this jam is leap-frogging its way down the river," says Cirinna, "so there is a potential, as it moves down, of backing the river up and causing it to move out of its banks for quite a way."

Cirinna says the ice jam is currently near the Highway 61 bridge. He says it will continue to move towards the Mississippi River as it melts away.

This ice jam led to flooding in and around Augusta in late January. Cirinna says emergency personnel are monitoring the area to see if an evacuation is needed.

The Green Bay Levee District and Union Township are also at risk from the Skunk River.

Cirinna is preparing to meet with city and county leaders to start preparing for potential flooding of the Mississippi River. He says the county needs to see a progressive warming, as opposed to a quick warming, to limit the impact of the flooding.

Cirinna says the three key factors for flooding are soil moisture, snow pack, and rain-fall.