Levee breach threatens Fremont area, officials urge evacuations

Lamar Ellis
March 17, 2019

Flood warnings have been issued for the Saginaw and Tittabawassee rivers in Mid-Michigan, which are expected to spill over their banks this weekend.

The National Weather Service says the Missouri River at St. Joseph reached almost 26 feet on Saturday, about a foot below what's considered major flooding at the northwest Missouri city.

The South Raccoon River is forecast to rise to 20.8 feet, or 0.8 feet above flood stage, Thursday morning and then begin falling to below flood stage by midday.

The National Weather Service in Omaha Nebraska is now evacuating and shutting down their radar due to a levee failure at the Union Dike, flood waters are now rushing into the warned area. The flood stage at Kansas City is 32 feet.

A roadside sign is almost engulfed in water Friday from the flooding Rock River at Castle Rock State Park, along state Route 2 near Oregon.

A levee breach is threatening the Fremont area and surrounding communities, with officials urging residents to evacuate immediately.

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Wisconsin's governor declared a state of emergency Friday as flooding worsened, and Iowa's governor expanded an emergency proclamation issued a day earlier. The city is now working to bolster levees.

"Northwest Missouri is already experiencing significant flooding that's closing roads and impacting homeowners and farmers, and the situation will affect many more Missourians in the coming days", Governor Parson said. Flood stage is 9.0 feet. The recent snow melting due to warmer temperatures is causing local creeks and rivers to rise.

The storm also spawned at least three tornadoes in MI and in on Thursday, according to the National Weather Service. SEMA also supplied St. Joseph with a sandbagging machine. There are no immediate reports of any injuries, but homes and trees were damaged and power was knocked out to thousands.

Gusty winds may continue into Friday across parts of the Ohio Valley and Great Lakes, with mainly light rain or snow showers also possible through Saturday as another weaker cold front passes through.

When a flood alert is in place, residents are advised to prepare a bag containing medicines, insurance documents and other important items, and to check for flood warnings. The weather service recorded a 60 miles per hour wind gust at Indianapolis International Airport. Do not attempt to cross flooded roads.

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