It’s expected to be a soggy summer as the annual “spring rise” on the Missouri River caused the Army Corps of Engineers to send record amounts of water downstream.
According to Senior Branch Forecaster with the Hydrometeorological Prediction Center Bruce Terry, a major storm system is developing in the Colorado Rockies. “This is almost like a system we would see in the cool season, but it’s going to have summertime moisture available. It’s going to lead to a widespread heavy rainfall event from northeastern Colorado and western Nebraska, northward and eastward through the remainder of Nebraska, much of the Dakotas, over into Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Iowa. There’s still rather high confidence that this event is going to occur.” Terry said. “We do get a break later Wednesday through at least Friday and it looks like we go into a more summer like pattern for the remainder of the weekend into next week. If we can get through the next two and half days, we will see some relief. Until that time, I think it’s going to be another unusually heavy rainfall event for this time of year.”
Brigadier General John McMahon said the corps watching these weather patterns and making adjustments as needed. “I remain seriously concerned about the performance of the levees. We had three over topping/breachings reported. It points out that, as the water makes its way down through the system and levees over top, we are going to have many challenges on our hands. We are watching it very closely. I caution residents to stay aware of the situations as this unfolds.”
Corps officials say more than 250 residents had to be evacuated this weekend as water poured over levees in Holt and Atchison counties.
The busted levees are wreaking havoc on travel. MoDOT’s Rick Bennett said navigation is going to be difficult throughout the summer months. “We’re just about to the point where we have no Missouri River bridges accessible in the northwest corner of the state,” according to Bennett.
Interstate 29 is closed to all traffic at mile marker 110.
From Kansas City – Use Interstate 35 Preferred truck route
From St. Joseph – Use US 36 East to I-35 North to Iowa or Use US 71 North to Iowa
US 159 in Holt County
US 136 in Atchinson County