Tiny hamlet of Hamburg may vanish with flood, evacuations underway

News

June 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

Residents in the far southwest Iowa town of Hamburg are being forced from their homes by the flooding Missouri River. Hamburg Fire Chief Dan Sturm says about half of the town is threatened by the rising, dirty water, which is inching closer by the minute.

“Right now, we’re evacuating the lower, south end of Hamburg,” Chief Sturm says. “It’s a work in progress, really, here in town. They’re still moving out. They’re doing a very good job of finding other places to live right now.”

Sturm says a difficult situation is being made even worse as the forecasters say this won’t be a short-term issue. He says most people who are packing up are likely leaving for good.

“They’re talking months of this water staying here and it’s highly unlikely that any houses are going to survive this,” he says. “I just can’t see how anything will be salvageable.”

Sturm says it’s likely there will be little left of the community after this flood. While residents on the south side of the town of 12-hundred are evacuating now, others are doing the same. Hamburg residents are being told the downtown area will likely be completely covered with water, which may remain for several months.

(Radio Iowa)