Branstad warns of Missouri River flooding

DES MOINES — Gov. Terry Branstad said Monday he’s never seen a more threatening situation along the Missouri River than what’s developing this year.

Branstad and Derek Hill, administrator of the state’s Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, said residents along the river’s Iowa side already are taking flood preparation stages and they face a situation where they are displaced for a protracted period of time.

“It continues to be a very serious situation. It’s important for residents along the Missouri to continually monitor the situation,” Branstad told his weekly news conference.

Hill said the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has increased outflows from upstream dams significantly. The outflow is nearly double the normal level and likely will climb in the next week or so. He said flood water depths will vary and overall the Missouri River could overflow its banks by a few hundred feet to as much as two miles as the river swells.

“This is going to result in large areas of flooding” along the Missouri River, said Branstad. “This is the worst situation I can ever remember.”

Hill said the river levels will probably be elevated through August and affected residents could be displaced from their homes and businesses for several weeks to several months.

Comments: (515) 243-7220;