Missouri River Flooding 2011

via Flickr/MissouriDNRPhoto

Progress has been made on one of two flood-damaged state parks in northwest Missouri.

Big Lake and Lewis & Clark State Parks were underwater for several weeks during last summer’s severe flooding along the Missouri River.  Lewis and Clark, about 20 miles southwest of St. Joseph, has reopened for day use only.  Missouri State Parks Superintendent Bill Bryan says the campground is still closed.

(via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Jay Woods)

An increase in free space within reservoirs would not have made much of a difference in last year’s record flooding along the Missouri River, according to a report released today by the Army Corps of Engineers.   

Jody Farhat, the Corps’ Chief Water Manager for the Missouri River, says a higher amount of free space would have only reduced last year’s flooding, not prevented it.

“Due to the tremendous volume of water, we still would have had very high record releases from the reservoirs," Farhat said.  "We still would have had a significant flood event in the Missouri basin."

(via Flickr/IndofunkSatish)

Parks again rejects Durbin's call for earlier night club closings

East St. Louis mayor Alvin Parks is again rejecting a call from Sen. Dick Durbin to institute an earlier closing time for the city’s night clubs and liquor stores

Durbin was in his hometown on Wednesday encouraging area ministers to push Parks for a 1 a.m. closing time. Durbin believes it would help curb the killings in a city that a federal prosecutor has called the nation’s most dangerous.

(UPI/Rick Meyer)

Missouri will receive a $16.5 million federal grant to fund temporary jobs aimed at helping with large-scale recovery efforts from the 2011 Joplin tornado and from flooding around the state last year.

The U.S. Department of Labor said in a release Tuesday that the $16.5 million grant is from the National Emergency Grant program.

(via Wikimedia Commons/DEMIS Mapserver/Shannon 1)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it has met its deadline on the most critical levee repairs on the Missouri River from Omaha and Council Bluffs to just below the Missouri border at Rockport and the levees are ready to handle high water again.

The corps says five breaches have been closed and several damaged segments have been repaired from last summer's historic flooding.

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Photo by Maj. Gen. David Sprynczynatyk)

Reporting from KXCV's Kirk Wayman also used in this report.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it's unlikely that all the levees damaged by record flooding along the Missouri River last summer will be repaired by spring - and that's changing the way the Corps manages the river.

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Jay Woods)

Updated 4:13 p.m.

An independent panel says the US Army Corps of Engineers did what it could to prevent this year's record flooding along the Missouri River but that changes will be needed to manage increasingly frequent extreme weather events.

Hydrologist Bill Lawrence of the National Weather Service participated in the panel review and says Montana's record-breaking rainfall in May contributed to unprecedented runoff downstream.

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Photo by Maj. Gen. David Sprynczynatyk)

U.S. senators from seven Missouri River states are asking the Government Accountability Office to examine this summer's heavy flooding throughout the river basin.

The request was supported by 13 senators who are part of the Missouri River Working Group. The group includes senators from Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota.

(via Flickr/NASA Earth Observatory)

The Army Corps of Engineers says it's likely there will be more flooding along a Mississippi River floodway in southeast Missouri that was inundated earlier this year.

The corps says that based on forecasts of unseasonably high river levels there is a "significant risk" of more flooding along the Birds Point Floodway in the near future.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers announced today that it’s changing its short-term approach to managing water levels on the Missouri River, following devastating flooding this summer in Missouri, Iowa and North Dakota.

Jody Farhat is chief of the Corps’ Missouri River Basin Water Management office in Omaha.  She says the Corps of Engineers will be more flexible this fall and winter in evacuating as much water as possible along the Missouri ahead of next year’s runoff season.

UPI/Bill Greenblatt

Nixon to announce details of China trip

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon says state officials expect to finalize billions of dollars of export agreements during an upcoming trade trip to China. Nixon plans to announce more details of the trip today during a visit to a Cargill soybean processing facility in Kansas City.

The governor said Monday the trip will allow the state to sign export agreements with Chinese agencies and provide a chance for numerous Missouri businesses to close deals with Chinese customers.

(via Flickr/Kansas City District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers/Susan Abbott )

The Army Corps of Engineers says flooding along the Missouri River in Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri should end a few days sooner than predicted.

The Corps has been gradually reducing the amount of water being released from the six dams upstream since Aug. 19. Throughout the summer, roughly 160,000 cubic feet of water per second was being released from the dam near Yankton, S.D. creating flooding along the entire lower Missouri River.

(via Flickr/USACEpublicaffairs)

The federal government has approved the disaster declaration for six counties in northwest Missouri that were pounded by flooding along the Missouri River.

Gov. Jay Nixon announced Friday that eligible residents of Andrew, Atchison, Buchanan, Holt, Lafayette and Platte counties can seek federal assistance uninsured property that was lost to the flood. Eligible expenses include temporary housing, home repair, and the replacement of household items.  

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Photo by Maj. Gen. David Sprynczynatyk)

Senators from states lining the Missouri River are asking the Army Corps of Engineers to outline plans for next year's flood preparations.

The senators say in a letter sent to top Corps officials on Monday that the agency must learn from this year's devastating flood season and apply those lessons to next year's plan.

The delegation is also asking what authority the Corps has to make changes to its annual operating plan for the river, and whether any additional authority will be needed.

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Jay Woods)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to significantly reduce the amount of water being released into the Missouri River in late August and September.

Brig. Gen. John McMahon outlined the plan for bringing an end to flooding along the river.

The corps has been releasing massive amounts of water from the six dams along the river to deal with heavy spring rains and above-average mountain snowpack.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Good morning! Here are some of today's starting headlines:

Heat wave decreases flood threat on Missouri River

The heat wave that's plagued Missouri for most of July has had a positive side effect:  it's lessened the flood threat along the Missouri River between Kansas City and St. Louis.

Mark Fuchs is a hydrologist with the National Weather Service office in St. Louis.  Fuchs said the extreme high temperatures have dried up the soil along the Missouri River's tributaries.

(via Flickr/roberthuffstutter)

After years of drought, barge operators along the Missouri River got more rain than they had hoped for this year.

The industry had grown optimistic when rising river levels appeared to promise an increase in barge traffic this year. The Missouri Department of Transportation even projected a 15 percent to 20 percent increase.

But then the rains started, causing flooding along the 675-mile stretch from Sioux City, Iowa, to St. Louis. That prompted the U.S. Coast Guard to close the river between Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota and Glasgow, Mo.

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Jay Woods)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it will reduce water releases from Gavins Point Dam in South Dakota, a sign that major Missouri River flooding could be nearing an end.

The corps' Omaha District construction chief, Robert Michaels, says the corps will decrease the water volume gradually from its current 160,000 cubic feet per second. The corps plans to drop the flow to 155,000 cubic feet per second on July 31 and cut it to 150,000 cubic feet per second on Aug. 1.

flickr/rcbodden

Dangerously hot in St. Louis Metro area Monday and Tuesday

The National Weather Service has issued an excessive heat warning for Monday and Tuesday due to extreme temperatures and humidity.

John Carney with the National Weather Service says heat index values will range from 110 to 115 degrees.

(Via Flickr/USACEPublicAffairs/Photo by Maj. Gen. David Sprynczynatyk)

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is taking the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to task for its handling of the Missouri River, which has flooded thousands of acres of farmland in seven states.

The Associated Press obtained a copy of a June 28 letter in which Vilsack questions the Corps' decision not to release more water from dams earlier in the spring to prevent prolonged flooding this summer. The flooding followed spring rains and the melting of a deep Rocky Mountain snowpack.

(St. Louis Public Radio)

Amtrak is extending the suspension of one its two daily round trips between St. Louis and Kansas City because of continued flooding along the Missouri River.

The suspension took effect July 2 and had been scheduled to expire at midweek. But the passenger train service said Wednesday the change remains in effect at least through Saturday.

(U.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo by Carlos J. Lazo)

Missouri River tributaries face greater flood risk this summer

Hundreds of tributaries that feed the congested Missouri River face a greater-than-normal flood risk this summer because of water levels that have kept smaller rivers from draining.

(via Flickr/Daniel Paquet)

Reporting by KXCV's Kirk Wayman used in this report.

Several communities up and down the swollen Missouri River are not only requesting sandbags, but vaccinations as well.

In extreme Northwest Missouri, Atchison County deputy emergency manager Mark Manchester said his office has given about 50 workers tetanus shots during the flood fight.

(Adam Allington/St. Louis Public Radio)

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon says high flood water on the Missouri and Mississippi Rivers will be with us for most of the summer this year.

Nixon met with local officials in St. Charles and St. Louis Counties today.

Outside of the city of Chesterfield, Mo. Nixon stood on a levee that was reinforced after the Flood of 93.

Nixon says he doesn't expect the flooding to be as severe, but the Army National Guard is already standing by should if needed.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers photo by Carlos J. Lazo

Obama issues federal emergency declaration

President Barack Obama has issued a federal emergency declaration for Missouri because of flooding along the Missouri River system and flash floods in the northeast. Gov. Jay Nixon says his request for the declaration was granted Thursday.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

Gov. Jay Nixon is seeking a federal emergency declaration for the state because of flooding along the Missouri River system and flash floods in the northeast.

The governor made the request Tuesday in a letter to President Barack Obama.

(via Wikimedia Commons/DEMIS Mapserver/Shannon 1)

The massive amount of water flowing south and east along the Missouri River will begin to flood portions of central Missouri this Independence Day holiday weekend.

The Missouri River at Jefferson City is forecast to rise by six feet and reach 29 feet as early as Thursday, just a foot shy of the top of the city's north levee.  Jim Kramper with the National Weather Service office in St. Louis expects the capital city's flood threat to remain at moderate.

(Marshall Griffin/St. Louis Public Radio)

Updated 8:55 with information about another levee breach:

The flooding has breached another levee in northwest Missouri, forcing the evacuation of the Holt County town of Craig.

Emergency officials in Holt County say the flooding Missouri River breached a levee along the Big Tarkio River around 2 p.m. Monday, and another nearby levee is being overtopped.

Residents of Craig have until noon to leave their homes. Emergency sandbagging operations are ongoing.

Our earlier story:

The amount of water being released from a South Dakota dam into the Missouri River could increase, if a weather system currently over the river’s upper basin dumps more rain.

That’s the warning given today by Brigadier General John McMahon of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during a visit to Jefferson City.

(National Weather Service map/U.S. Army Corps of Engineers)

Above: A National Weather Service map of projected flooding along the lower Missouri River, based on an average amount of summer rain, falling in a concentrated time period. This map assumes a river elevation of 37 feet at St. Charles, three feet below the 1993 record. Flood stage at St. Charles is 25 feet. Click here to see a larger version of the map.

The U.S Army Corps of Engineers says we can expect only minor flooding along the lower Missouri River if we get average rainfall through August - but, a stormy summer could change all that.

(Courtesy Atchison County 911/Emergency Management on Facebook)

Levee Break Sends Releases Torrents of Water

Crews are racing to build up a protective wall to keep floodwaters from reaching a small Iowa town after the swollen Missouri River punched a massive hole in the main levee that protects the community.

Two levees in northwest Missouri ruptured yesterday, sending water over rural farmland.

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