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People gather in Elwood to discuss possible flood plans

Many people from the small town of Elwood, Kansas showed up to an informational meeting Friday night to discuss possible river flooding.

Posted: Mar 15, 2019 8:43 PM
Updated: Mar 18, 2019 3:32 PM

(ELWOOD, Kan.) Many people from the small town of Elwood, Kansas showed up to an informational meeting Friday night to discuss possible river flooding.

The town flooding just eight years ago still on the minds of many people that live there.

Local police and county emergency management officials have plans in place to deal with any flooding that could occur.

"We're working with the Doniphan County Sheriff's Department, the Kansas Highway Patrol, Kansas Fish & Game, State Emergency Management, we've got things in place if we need manpower," Elwood Police Chief, Larry Hunsaker said.

Officials say the levees protecting the town are holding but they are worried about the amount of water that will be coming down from the north. 

Water from the Gavins Point Dam in Yankton, South Dakota has been releasing increased amounts of water into the Missouri River. A dam breaching in Spencer, Nebraska along the Niobrara River also leading to elevated river levels.

At the meeting Friday, many discussed the dam, which is trying to hold back an abnormally large amount of water for this time of year.

"The ground is frozen which won't let the water go down. You've had snow, which is not unusual but you've had warm weather and rain which caused the snow to melt and allowed it all go to into Gavin's Point at one time as opposed to the snow melting gradually and going in," the city attorney, Joel Euler, said

The City of Elwood has not recommended evacuations yet but that still could happen. 

Animal advocates were also at the meeting and expressed the need for protecting pets as well. A shelter will be in place to house the pets next to the shelter for people.

And as river levels continue to rise, people in the area are hoping for the best but in the meantime, are ready for anything.

"Like I tell people, be prepared, not afraid," Euler said.

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