Heavy December Rains Lead to Flooding

The heavy rain that fell over the weekend is causing problems across eastern Iowa. Over two and a half inches fell in Manchester Saturday and Sunday, with Ryan reporting three inches and Oelwein reporting over three and a half.

Some area roads, including 40th Street in Fayette County, have been covered by water. An Oelwein teen drove into a ditch filled with floodwater after she tried crossing the flooded road Sunday night. The Sheriff’s Office says she wasn’t injured.

Delaware County Engineer Anthony Bardgett says all the rain is causing some very soft gravel roads.

There are no flood warnings in effect for the Maquoketa River in Manchester, but the river levels are high. The National Weather Service says the Maquoketa River is expected to peak at 13-point-7 feet early Tuesday morning and then gradually drop. Flood stage is 14 feet – that’s when water starts to effect West Main Street and homes on the south side of town.

On Monday, water was seen covering portions of Hartridge Golf Course on the northeast edge of Manchester. (Photo below, courtesy of Sarah Meyer, KMCH)

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Island Park in Fairbank was also underwater.

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The rain also put a bit of a damper on the construction at Lake Delhi. Lake District President Steve Leonard tells KMCH that there were able to test the new gates and successfully manage the higher water flows. However, the rain caused a mess at the construction site. Leonard says they’ll wait about a week and let the area dry out before assessing any possible damage.

If you’re tired of the wet weather, look on the bright side… if it was a little colder, this would have been a major winter snowstorm. One inch of rain equals ten inches of snow, so our weekend rain would have added up to two to three FEET of snow!

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