If fixes fail, Iowa town could be left under water


June 7th, 2011 by Ric Hanson

HAMBURG, Iowa (AP) – Flooding along the Missouri River is expected to break decades-old records this summer and test its system of levees, dams and flood walls like never before. The swollen river is already threatening the small southwest Iowa town of Hamburg.

Crews were scrambling Monday to pile massive sandbags on a faltering levee and build a secondary barrier. The fire chief says that if those efforts fail, parts of Hamburg could be under as much as 8 feet of water for a month or more.

The levee that guards an area of farmland and small towns between Omaha, Neb., and Kansas City has been partially breached in at least two places. New breaches are expected as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers releases record amounts of water from dams by mid-June.