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Cedar Rapids Officials Preparing as the Cedar River Rises Again

Cement barrel and sandbags in NewBo
Carson / i107-1

One week ago today, we were watching as the river was about to crest and start receding, hoping it’d be the only time we’d have to be concerned this summer.  Mother Nature had other plans as for the second time this summer, the river is expected to crest over the 17ft mark. How prepared are we?   The city assures us they have been very proactive in their preparations, including a very helpful action taken at NewBo earlier today.

Residents and businesses worried about high water levels can head to the market to make sandbags, with all sand, bags, and ties provided by the city.  Residents will need to bring their own gloves, shovels, and drinking water. Be aware that full bags will weigh about 40 pounds though.  The city also asks you to check in with the Public Works Department if you plan on bringing a crew of 10 or more. They can be reached at 319-286-5802.

As for other preparations, some roads and other areas have been closed around the city for various reasons including flood prep, flooded roadway, or damage from previous storms.  They remind you to always heed closures and barriers for your own safety.  See the latest list here.

Once again, all 5 gates at the 5-in-1 dam have been raised to help the water flow. We’ve also become very familiar with the cement barrels and cones being placed around storm drains and manhole covers, and should expect to see those returning, as well as pumps being set-up around the city.

Current preparations should be able to handle a crest of up to 19 ft.  As of now, the river is expected to crest at 18.6 ft by noon on Friday.  In comparison, the river crested at 17.6 feet one week ago. Crews will continue to monitor the situation round the clock, and we’ll keep you update right here.

Also, Theisen’s has informed us they still have generators available as of now at both their north and south Cedar Rapids locations.

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