Missouri River Flooding Threatens Montana Campgrounds
Today's video is courtesy of KFBB-TV, Black Eagle, Mont.
The warm weekend is causing problems in central Montana's Broadwater County.
Ice jams in the Missouri River have led to flooding of at least three feet in some areas of Townsend.
Some residents are being encouraged to buy sand bags if the water rises any higher.
A steady flow floods Centerville Lane and local campgrounds are covered by ice.
Virginia Knerr, Broadwater County Public Information Officer, says, "With the temperatures being up and down, suggesting mid 30's to 40's throughout the week, dropping below freezing at night, that's kind of what's causing some of our problems is you have the melting in the day time and more freezing in the evening, and that ice is just being built up as it's coming down the river."
Jay Robinson says, "Usually, it starts early in the spring about April or March, but this is probably the worst we've seen it."
Although no evacuations have been ordered at this time, residents are still concerned.
Bing Menard says, "We’ve been here over 30 years and this is the worst I’ve ever seen it. You can see the horse shed out there, well that's as far as the water's ever come before, so this is a different deal and we're just hoping for the best."
"If it came up like another three feet, I’d be probably concerned. I’d be really worried," says Robinson.
For the flooding to stop, the ice needs to break up enough so that water can flow through the main channel and to the lake.
Knerr says, "I know in the past they've done some mechanical things to actually break the ice up. We have not talked about that at this point. I guess it all depends on how it progresses here over the week."
But for now, safety is the top priority.
"We just remind everyone to be careful in these areas, especially home owners trying to work around this, and anybody walking in those areas; if they have to be out there, be very careful," comments Knerr.