Eastern Iowa downpours lead to flooding, traffic issues

Coggon asks residents to conserve water after sewer plant flooded

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COGGON — Coggon residents are asked to conserve water while the community contends with an inundated sewer plant.

City clerk Brenda Quant, said the sewer plant — built in 1939 — flooded thanks to the heavy rains overnight and its pumps are under water. Citizens are asked to limit their water usage until the issue is resolved.

“Limit laundry, dishes, water, etc.,” Quant said.

The city is scheduled to begin construction on a new water plant in November, Quant said. She did not know when the issue would be resolved, but estimated it would be addressed by the end of the day on Friday.

Alex Gibbs, National Weather Service meteorologist based in Davenport, said residents from the Vinton to the Swisher and Solon area received a heavy amount of rainfall, ranging from 5 to 7 inches.

Cedar Rapids and Iowa City each received about 3 to 5 inches total.

In Cedar Rapids, police and fire officials responded to a number of weather-related calls. Cedar Rapids public safety spokesman Greg Buelow said police were forced to do traffic control around Ellis Boulevard and Penn Avenue NW during the storms, and traffic was rerouted around Ellis Boulevard and Edgewood Road because of water on the roads.

The storm downed power lines at Second Avenue and 18th Street SE and in the 800 block of Eighth Street SW. Buelow said lightning struck a home, causing charred electrical outlets in a home at 2123 Sugar Creek Drive NW.

Firefighters responded to the intersection of Edgewood and Ellis at 7:44 p.m. Thursday for a report person trapped in a stalled vehicle, due to the high water. A stalled vehicle was found on Edgewood, but there was no occupant inside. Traffic was rerouted until the vehicle could be removed, Buelow said.

Twenty minutes later, authorities responded to the 1000 block of 29th Avenue SW for a car stalled in the flooded roadway. There were three people inside and roughly a foot of water around the car, Buelow said. Firefighters helped to push the vehicle out of the water and then requested a tow truck.

Iowa City Police Sgt. Scott Gaarde said he was not aware of any weather-related incidents in Iowa City.

Although the rainfall did not break any records, Gibbs said water in the atmosphere — or water that could become rainfall as high as 80,000 feet — neared historical measurements.

More rain was expected on Friday, but total accumulation should be an inch or less.

The weekend forecast has no chance of rain, Gibbs said, with a temperature in the low 80s for both Saturday and Sunday, with lows in the 60s. Dew points are expected to reach the 60 degree range.

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