The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) is warning travelers to remain behind the barricades of closed roads, even after the flood waters begin to recede. They urge not move or go around closure devices and enter a road closed to travel.
Eventually, roads once covered with flood waters from the Missouri River will resurface. The DOT reports that does not mean they will be immediately safe for travel. In some instances, the flood damage will be obvious, in particular where segments of the roadway have been lost.
But an even greater safety risk is the unknown and unexpected, where damage is located below the pavement surface or around bridges. For instance, if the pavement has been undermined by flood waters, it is vulnerable to collapse at any time.
Over the coming weeks, the Missouri River levels will begin to slowly drop as releases from Gavins Point Dam are reduced by the U.S. Corps of Engineers.
It is unknown at this time the extent of damage that may be discovered on the roads when officials begin inspections after the water recedes.