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Former Charles City Mayor Recalls Historic 2008 Floods

June 11, 2018 09:17 AM

(ABC 6 News) -- As first responders began the cleanup process after this weekend's severe storms, many were reminded of historic flooding that occurred exactly ten years ago.

In June 2008, many communities across Iowa and Minnesota were hit hard by record or near-record flooding, especially Austin and Charles City. Both cities have undertaken measures to reduce their flood risk since then.

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As the Cedar River crested in Charles City Sunday, former mayor Jim Erb recalled the damage caused by more than 13 feet of water above the river's normal height.

"There have been at least three or four floods in the last 20 years and each time some structures were taken down and removed from the floodplain," he said. 

After the 2008 flood, the city also remade the downtown park lining the river and added a whitewater rafting feature to the river. A former suspension bridge was converted into a piece of public art.

Erb said communities should consider joining local watershed management agencies to coordinate flood prevention updates in the future.

The 2008 floods were also the second-highest peak heights for the Dobbins and Turtle Creeks in Austin. The Cedar River in Austin reached a maximum height of 22.4 feet, more than seven feet above flood stage and the third-highest recorded crest at the city's wastewater treatment plant.

https://www.weather.gov/arx/jun08_flooding

Credits

Logan Reigstad

Copyright 2018 - KAAL-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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