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In Western Iowa, Three Breaches Along the Missouri; Officials Monitoring I-29

Iowa DOT
The Iowa Department of Transportation is monitoring flooding near I-29.

Officials in western Iowa are watching the rising Missouri River. Water breached a levee in Pottawattamie County Wednesday evening, the third protective structure in the area to breach due to the Missouri River’s third round of flooding this year.
Scott Manz, an emergency management specialist with Pottawattamie County, estimates the breach on the Vanman Levee less than a mile south of the Harrison County line was initially 30 feet wide and “has since grown.” He said the Iowa Department of Transportation has been notified.

“That’s just more water up in that part of the county and it just gets close to I-29, so they’re going to be watching that,” Manz said.

Officials estimate about 40 homes are in the affected area. The county has sent out emergency alerts to people, but has not declared a mandatory evacuation.

“I know a lot of people have already left their homes,” Manz said. “A lot of them are just going to monitor it and they’ll leave if they need to.”

The Iowa Department of Transportation is continuing to monitor I-29 to see if it needs to close a portion due to flooding.

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds issued a disaster proclamation for southwest Iowa's Fremont, Harrison, Mills and Pottawattamie counties on Wednesday because of the latest round of flooding along the Missouri. This authorizes state resources to help areas respond to and recover from flooding. It also gives grants to households that have incomes up to 200 percent of the federal poverty level.

The Missouri River at Omaha, Nebraska was recorded at 29.89 feet around 3 p.m. Thursday. It’s forecasted to crest at 7 p.m. Friday, at more than a foot above minor flood stage. It should begin falling Saturday afternoon.

Katie Peikes was a reporter for Iowa Public Radio from 2018 to 2023. She joined IPR as its first-ever Western Iowa reporter, and then served as the agricultural reporter.