With Blizzard on the Way, Midwest Braces for More Flooding

With the ground already saturated in many states, health facilities and public agencies are bracing for more flooding in the coming days.


Extreme Weather

Sandbags are lowered to bolster a levee on the Loup River in Nebraska on March 23, 2019. Flooding has already inundated many parts of the Midwest, and another blizzard is expected this week, which could bring even more. (Photo courtesy of U.S. Air Force)

Areas impacted by last month’s “bomb cyclone” may be in for even more snowfall and flooding this week. The substantial snowfall is expected to sweep through the Plains States and Upper Midwest starting Wednesday. Some forecasters predict the storm system could add up to more than 30 inches of snow, with runoff potentially causing more flooding.

Nebraska, South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin and other states could see prolonged snowfall, and the broader region still has substantial flood damage from earlier this year, when rivers crested in multiple states.

“This is shaping up to be a potentially unprecedented flood season, with more than 200 million people at risk for flooding in their communities,” said Ed Clark, director of NOAA’s National Water Center, in a statement last month.

The organization stated that almost two-thirds of the the Lower 48 states face an elevated risk for flooding through May, with the potential for major or moderate flooding in 25 states.

Direct Relief has been working with health facilities impacted by the flooding across the Midwest, including the Good Neighbor Community Health Center, based in Columbus, Nebraska, which also operates a site in Fremont, which was badly impacted by flooding.

Direct Relief is in communication with healthcare facilities that may be impacted by further flooding, including in Missouri, and is ready to to provide assistance if requested.

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