HAMBURG, Iowa — The rising Missouri River has people in Hamburg scrambling to get ready for yet another flood. The entire town was flooded back in March, after the river spared the town mostly back in 2011.
Now, local crews have rebuilt an earthen levee with survey help from the Army Corps of Engineers. A brand new double-width Hesco barrier has also been put up across the downtown area. Many of the buildings south of the Hesco barrier are still flooded out and have yet to be rehabilitated. Those buildings north of the barrier did get water in March but are trying to come back.
“We’re trying to get back to normal as much as we can,” said Phil Kuhr of the Stoner Drug Store. “We’re open for business that we can do the prescriptions over the counter meds, the fountain is not open yet.”
The store is known for its antique-style soda fountain. Around six inches of water inside Stoner Drug kept the business closed for two months. It reopened last Tuesday.
Rising water has again cut off small towns in Fremont County.
“We can no longer, as of two days ago, access McPaul. You cannot access Bartlett, you cannot access Percival, you cannot access Highway 2 , Sapp Brothers area,” said Mike Crecelius, Fremont County Emergency Manager. “During conference call this morning and found the Corps of Engineers 75,000 ft.³ per second is going to go through the summer, so that’s another point of concern. The river is going to be running high all summer long.”
Crecelius said some dredge units came up river to repair the levees and have been unable to work due to high water.
“We’re really going to need some bug spray here before long, with all this water there’s going to be a lot of mosquitoes among other things floating around in the air,” said Crecelius.