Rescue, evacuations continue in eastern Nebraska

Rescue, evacuations continue in eastern Nebraska

"The snow is melting, and we've had some torrential rains, and that's created torrential flooding", Becker told NPR.

The flooding has all but blocked access to some small communities along the river, where potable drinking water has become scarce as the flood has contaminated wells, Wight said. "People who live near rivers should be paying close attention to flooding updates and be ready to move valuable property, if necessary".

As of now, several area rivers are expected to be into minor to moderate flood stage by Friday and Saturday.

If you live in a flood prone area, it is a good idea to prepare for the rising water and have a plan to evacuate should you need to.

Authorities spent Saturday using boats and large vehicles to evacuate residents in parts of the state, where a recent deluge of rainwater and snowmelt was sent pouring over frozen ground, overwhelming creeks and rivers, according to the Associated Press.

A levee failure has prompted the National Weather Service to issue a flash flood emergency for Fremont and a flash flood warning southeastern Dodge County, according to a NWS alert: "A levee breach on the northwest side of town along the Platte River has failed which will cause flash flooding shortly of the immediately surrounding areas". The Nebraska Public Power District said it was likely the Cooper Nuclear Station about 59 miles south of Omaha would be shut down early Saturday. The flood stage at Kansas City is 32 feet.

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The restrictions come as the river reached moderate flood stage at almost 32 feet on Friday at Omaha, where it's expected to crest at almost 34 feet on Monday, according to the National Weather Service.

"That's how fast the water was coming up", Martin said.

Ice jams can occur quickly and without warning, increasing the risk of localized flooding.

In the aftermath of a "bomb cyclone", Nebraska is experiencing its worst flooding in 50 years, leaving people stranded in need of rescue and claiming one life.

Watson said a multitude of factors are in play in terms of the extent of the river's fury, including additional rainfall north of St. Joseph and how exactly the snow to our north melts. "Eventually as we head into next week, we should see more and more of the rivers start to recede below flood stage". The closure was reminiscent of historic flooding along the river in 2011 that saw segments of the interstate in western Iowa washed away.

Other variables include relocation of water by a dam breach or increased flow from a dam releasing more water upstream. State police said first-responders say at least 21 homes were damaged, though no injuries have been reported.

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