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Emergency Management Agency Asks All Flood Damage Be Reported

March 29, 2019
By Anesa McGregor , Emmetsburg News

by Anesa McGregor

For the second time in two years, Palo Alto County and its residents are dealing with what is classified as moderate flooding.

"As of this morning, the river was at 13.4 feet, which is almost a foot below what was predicted," Emergency Manager with the Palo Alto County Emergency Management Agency Mark Hunefeld, Emergency Management Agency said.

"Do you have any idea how long Hwy 4 will be closed?" Supervisor Chairman Craig Merrill asked.

"I really can't say," Hunefeld said. "This year is different from last year and 1993. This year the water has gone where it wants to go. I went to Graettinger first thinking there would be a lot of flooding. It was opposite. There is flooding but the flooding really hasn't gone up or down much at all. The river is moving at a pretty good speed so it's just moved down stream. You come to Emmetsburg and there is water everywhere.

"Historically, Hwy 4 and Hwy 18 have been closed and resulted in damage and the southwest corner of Emmetsburg was damaged by flooding last year and in 1993. This year Hwy 4 is closed and Hwy 18 is close," Hunefeld continued.

According to Hunefeld, there was only one family displaced and Hunefeld contacted the Red Cross instead of opening up an emergency shelter.

Hunefeld wants to make sure that everyone is aware that Palo Alto County will be put on the Federal disaster declaration.

"I turned in the information I needed to on Friday, March 22, to the State," Hunefeld stated. "However, the State of Iowa filed information with the federal government asking for an expedited declaration for counties in Iowa to be declared disaster areas so federal funding was available.

"I called down to the capital and was assured that Palo Alto County will be put on the federal disaster list. The State will be updating the list of counties with the federal government at least a couple more times and our county will be put on then," Hunefeld added.

Hunefeld has requested that anyone who has flood damage to turn in a report, even if you have flood insurance. Reporting flood damage is extremely important. The more accurate flood damage is the potential for the individual to get help from the federal government increases plus it shows the level of damage throughout the county.

For information on flooding and damage reporting you can contact the Palo Alto County Emergency Management Agency at 712-852-4997 or Upper Des Moines Opportunity at 712-852-3482. Information can also be found on the Palo Alto County Emergency Management Agency's Facebook page. You can also use the following link:

This link will take you directly to the State of Iowa Public Damage & Storm Reporting page. It is a free page and there is no login needed.



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