Mississippi River Flooding

All posts tagged Mississippi River Flooding

By Chyna Glenn – AccuWeather

As Missouri residents continue to recover and clean up from deadly flooding, communities in Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi are bracing for dangerous flooding along the Mississippi River and its tributaries.

Mississippi River floodwaters have receded around the St. Louis area, and communities that were evacuated have returned to deal with the aftermath of flood damage.

“Waters are receding but cleanup continues in many Missouri communities,” Gov. Jay Nixon said on Twitter on Monday, Jan. 4, adding that the state is coordinating with federal and local officials to speed recovery.

Now, floodwaters are moving downstream along the Mississippi River, with major flooding expected for some locations in Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi.

The Mississippi River will swell to peak levels in Tennessee and northern Arkansas as the week draws to a close.

Continue reading at AccuWeather: Arkansas to Mississippi communities brace for dangerous river flooding

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In this aerial photo, flood water covers Interstate 44, Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015, in Valley Park, Mo. A rare winter flood threatened nearly two dozen federal levees in Missouri and Illinois on Wednesday as rivers rose, prompting evacuations in several places. (AP Photo/Jeff Roberson)

By AccuWeather

Deadly flooding is expected to surge farther south along the Mississippi River over the coming days, putting many more levees at risk for failing and more homes and highways under water.

Communities along the Mississippi River in Tennessee, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana should be prepared for flood issues over the coming weeks as the copious amounts of water travels farther south.

Water levels will continue to rise in Memphis, Tennessee, and Greenville, Mississippi, as well as Baton Rouge, Louisiana, through the second week of January. Levees will be forced to hold back the rising water, but in some cases may fail, as has been seen in the past week. Residents in these areas will want to be prepared for historic flooding.

Flooding on the middle portion of the Mississippi River and some of its tributaries reached levels not seen during the winter months since records began during the middle 1800s.

Continue reading at AccuWeather: Mississippi River flooding to threaten more levees, homes after leaving St. Louis area submerged

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By – AccuWeather

Flooding in the upcoming days and weeks following a tremendous December rainfall could be one for the record books in the Mississippi Valley.

Major flooding along the Mississippi, Illinois, Ohio, Missouri, Arkansas and Meramec rivers will have communities dealing with long-duration high water.

Freezing temperatures will cause some flooded areas to turn icy and will add to the challenges.

Flooding on the middle portion of the Mississippi River and its tributaries may reach levels not seen during the winter months since records began during the middle 1800s.

Water levels could rival the mark set during the summer of 1993 and spring of 1995 and 2011 in some cases. Chester and Cape Girardeau, Missouri, as well as Thebes, Illinois, could experience record high Mississippi River levels.

Continue reading at AccuWeather: River flooding may rival records in Mississippi Valley into January

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By

High water will continue to impact communities and barge operations along the upper Mississippi River into early July as more rain moves into the area.

Low-lying areas not protected by levees, such as farmland, homes, businesses and some roadways, are being inundated as river levels surpass flood stage.

Excessive rainfall, in some cases near a foot over the past month, has pushed the upper Mississippi River past flood stage from Minnesota and Wisconsin to Iowa, Illinois and northern Missouri.

At Minneapolis, rainfall to date (nearly 11 inches) for June was close to 90 percent of its average rainfall for the summer season June 1 to August 31.

Sightseers check out the flooding at the Harriet Island pavilion which was surrounded by the rising flood waters of the Mississippi River, Tuesday, June 24, 2014, in St. Paul, Minn. (AP Photo/Jim Mone)

Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton declared a State of Emergency for 35 of the state’s 87 counties last week do to the magnitude of anticipated flooding, according to the Associated Press. Gov. Dayton is seeking federal flood assistance for Minnesota.

According to Kathryn Sarnecki, vice president of redevelopment of harbor operations at the St. Paul Port Authority, “High water is topping docks, flooding access roads and preventing operations at two of our facilities this week.”

“As of Thursday, the Red Rock barge terminal of the St. Paul Port Authority was still operating.”

It will be days and weeks in some cases before upper Mississippi River levels drop below flood stage.

National Weather Service hydrologists stated that a crest of 20.13 feet occurred at St. Paul, Minnesota, on Thursday, but it will not be until early July before levels drop below flood stage.

“While water levels receding to 17 feet at St. Paul [flood stage] will allow more normal operations, even a drop of a couple of feet from current levels will help a great deal,” Sarnecki said.

Sarnecki stated that the barges were being temporarily parked in low flow areas, such as Pigs Eye Lake.

Once the river drops below levels where equipment can operate and personnel can get to the equipment, the barges will be moved into the docks and unloaded.

Approximately 10 million tons of materials ranging from grain and fertilizer to concrete and recycling materials pass through the St. Paul Port Authority annually.

According to AccuWeather Long Range Expert Paul Pastelok, “Additional rain is forecast to fall over the North Central states into early next week and is likely to be topped off by a one or more rounds of severe thunderstorms.”

How the additional rain is distributed over the region will determine impact on the large rivers, such as the upper part of the Mississippi in the days ahead. A few inches of additional rainfall over a few days could be enough to slow the forecast crest and recession of upper Mississippi River levels.

If much more than the expected 1 to 3 inches of rain falls on the upper Mississippi Basin this weekend, there is a chance of a new crest during July around St. Paul.

Excessive rainfall at the local level is a given in this pattern, which is likely to cause new incidents of flash, urban and small stream flooding.

Mississippi River levels will continue to rise into early July farther downstream at Quincy, Illinois, and eventually St. Louis, but lock and dam operations will mitigate these levels.

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No significant flooding and direct impact to barge traffic is expected from St. Louis on south at this time. However, if rounds of heavy rainfall continue over the North Central states and were to expand farther east over the Midwest and farther south along the Mississippi, the situation could change in the weeks ahead.

As long as there is enough separation between individual complexes of thunderstorms farther east over the Midwest, water levels on the major rivers, such as the Ohio and lower Mississippi, should remain fairly stable or within the operating range of most ports.

More at AccuWeather: Mississippi River Flooding to Impact Communities, Port Operations

By

Round after round of thunderstorm complexes have not only put a dent in long-term drought in parts of the Plains but also have the upper Mississippi River on the rise.

Rainfall between two and three times that of normal has fallen on portions of the northern and central Plains so far this June with near normal to double the average rainfall for the month in many areas farther south. Additional rounds of showers and thunderstorms are in the forecast through the coming week.

A large portion of the central and northern Plains will finish June with over a foot of rain.

The greatest amount of rain from Sunday to Monday will focus across Kansas and southern Nebraska, where an average of 2 to 3 inches is likely and the ground will absorb much of the water. However, another 1 to locally 2 inches of rain can fall over saturated areas of Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin and Illinois, where much of the rain will run off into streams and rivers.

The latest Drought Monitor continues to show large areas of extreme conditions over the southern Plains.

Some beneficial rain will reach hard-hit drought areas of Oklahoma, northern Texas, western Kansas and and southeastern Colorado into next week.

The rain has been and will continue to be a frequent visitor to the northern part the Ogallala Aquifer. The underground water supply extends from Nebraska to western Texas.

The complexes of thunderstorms will also bring incidents of severe weather in parts of Kansas, Colorado and Oklahoma on Sunday. There is the potential for damaging wind gusts, large hail and isolated tornadoes.

Since much of the rainfall will be concentrated to a several-hour period during thunderstorms Sunday into Monday, there is a risk of flash and urban flooding no matter what the drought status may be.

The Situation on the Mississippi River

 

Enough rain is forecast to fall on tributaries of the upper Mississippi River to continue to cause the waterway to rise into next week.

Hydrologists with the National Weather Service are projecting the Mississippi to reach major flood stage at St. Paul, Minnesota, during much of the coming week and similar levels at Burlington, Iowa, during late June.

Mississippi River levels will continue to rise during late June into early July farther downstream at Quincy, Illinois, and eventually St. Louis but lock and dam operations will significantly mitigate these levels.

Low-lying areas not protected by levees, such as farmland, waterfront properties and some roadways, will be inundated once river levels surpass flood stage.

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Heavy rainfall over the past couple of weeks has pushed the Big Sioux and Little Sioux rivers out of their banks in Iowa.

At Akron, Iowa, the Big Sioux River crested at a record 25.58 feet on Wednesday. The Little Sioux River at Linn Grove, Iowa, nearly equaled a record high level on Wednesday.

Minor to moderate flooding is forecast along portions of the Red River (of the North) at Fargo and Grand Forks, North Dakota. Minor flooding is projected along portions of the Missouri River in Nebraska and Missouri.

No significant impact to barge traffic is expected from St. Louis on to the south at this time. However, if heavy rainfall continues over the central Plains and were to expand farther east over the Midwest, the situation could change in the weeks ahead.

As long as there is enough separation between individual complexes of thunderstorms farther east over the Midwest, water levels on the major rivers, such as the Ohio and lower Mississippi, should remain fairly stable or well within the operating range of barges.

More at AccuWeather: Relentless Storms Trigger Mississippi River Flooding