More Rain, Floods Coming to Central Missouri
The next few days in Central Missouri will see more rain and flooding. The National Weather Service predicts 4-6 inches of rain by June 18, and it has issued flood watches and warnings across the state.
The Missouri River has reached over 27 feet in Jefferson City, surpassing the flood stage by 4 feet but not yet breaking the 30-foot levee. Cole County Emergency Management Director Bill Farr said he doesn’t expect the water to reach that height, but he will be prepared in the meantime.
“I keep about 50,000 sandbags on hand,” said Farr. “If it were to go over any of our levees down here, people would know to make that phone call and we can get the sandbags to them and start doing sandbagging operations if needed. That’s about all you can do.”
Farr said the city is located high enough that he isn’t worried about it being flooded. He said his main area of concern is along the Osage River. The Osage receives water from the Bagnell Dam and the Missouri River once it’s full. He said the water has already been up in residents’ yards around the Mari Osa Delta on the Osage this spring. He recommends that people in that area maintain a network with neighbors in order to set up a plan of action in case of flooding.
Areas of Boone County have also seen minor flooding over the past few days. Martina Pounds, the public information officer for Columbia/Boone County Office of Emergency Management said she expects the flooding to last for a few days.
“Low-water crossings all over the county will be flooded,” said Pounds. “Usually they flood really quickly and go down very quickly, but they might flood a little longer this time.”
She said the ground is already saturated and creeks are flooded from previous rain, so high water levels won’t subside right away. Rain hitting the northern part of the state will also make its way down to central-area rivers, so flood threats might linger for a few days.
In the meantime, Pounds warned against the dangers of driving in flooded spots as more rain moves into the area.
“It only takes four to six inches for a car to be swept off the road,” said Pounds. “It doesn’t take much. Don’t drive through standing water.”