Rivers rising higher and faster than expected
Heavy rain in a short period of time has pushed levels of several area rivers higher than previously forecast by the National Weather Service.
Flood warnings were in effect through Monday evening, June 30, 2014 for the Mississippi River at several area locations including Camanche, Rock Island, Illinois City and Muscatine. The Mississippi was just above the 11-feet flood stage at LeClaire Monday afternoon, June 30, and it was forecast to rise to 15.4 feet by Friday evening before it begins to fall. Commercial buildings along LeClaire’s waterfront are affected when the water reaches 16 feet. Water was already at the base of, or in, many houses along the river in Pleasant Valley. Water was also at the foundations of some homes on Campbell’s Island.
In an update published Monday afternoon, the National Weather Service said major flooding was also forecast along the Mississippi River at Rock Island. Flood stage there is 15 feet, and the water level was steady at 17 feet by Monday afternoon. The river may crest between 20.5 and 22.5 feet before it begins to fall Saturday morning.
Davenport city officials were expected to use Hesco barriers to close River Drive as water was quickly rising Monday afternoon, June 30.
Major flooding was forecast for the Maquoketa River near Maquoketa, where the river was at 26.7 feet and rising Monday afternoon. Flood stage there is 24 feet; the river was forecast to rise to between 31 and 32.5 feet by Tuesday evening, depending on rainfall. At 30 feet, water affects the Maquoketa Municipal Light Plant and Highway 113.
Major flooding was forecast along the Iowa River at Columbus Junction. Flood stage is 19 feet there, and the river was forecast to rise to 24.3 feet by Friday morning, with a potential crest of 26.2 feet by Monday, July 7. The Iowa River was also three feet above flood stage at Wapello and expected to rise to 25.8 feet by Friday morning. A potential crest of 26.9 feet, which is 6.9 feet above flood stage, was forecast for July 8.
Major flooding was happening along the Wapsipinicon River near DeWitt, where the water was more than two feet above the 11-feet flood stage Monday afternoon. The river could crest between 13.5 and 14 feet there, depending on how much rain falls. Homes along the river were already affected.
“Additional rainfall amounts of 1 to 3 inches are possible in already hard-hit areas,” said a statement from the National Weather Service. “This may produce serious and life-threatening flash flooding.”