Flood concerns once more in eastern Iowa - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Flood concerns once more in eastern Iowa


VINTON (KWWL) - To predict Iowa's future, all you have to do is look at it's past - swollen streams, overflowed levees, and of course, flooded homes.  That is the prediction made by the National Weather Service in its spring outlook released Friday.  It means concern about more flooding is only amplified due to eastern Iowa's recent history.  Vinton was one of the flashpoints of the floods of 2008.  The city's emergency services building was swamped.  The municipal utility at the mercy of the rising Cedar River.  More than two dozen homes near the river lost that battle.  Fast forward to February 2010.  As snow continues to pile up so do concerns the river may rise to record levels once again.

"It raises concern. It's happened once, it can happen again and so we're always concerned about flooding again like in '08 but we're working to take steps to minimize damage in future flooding," said Vinton City Coordinator Andrew Lent.

That includes Hesco barriers.  28 homes are in the buyout process.  The city's already working on plans for a park and trail system along the river.  Meantime, insurance agents say they've seen more people buy flood insurance since 2008.  But they say many people don't get it due to misconceptions.

"For most people, it's not as expensive as they think it's going to be and the other thing that people have a misconception about is if they're eligible to buy it," said insurance agent Mark Yarwood.

Yarwood says most people are eligible.  He says it's smart to think ahead.

"People typically want to do it just for their structure and they don't want to add in the contents for the extra price. An extra 200 bucks a year is worth it because if you get in a flood like '08, it's your contents that will take it and if you don't have coverage for that, that's when you'll be in a bind," said Yarwood.

A bind everyone hopes to avoid at least one more year.  The next spring flood outlook from the National Weather Service will be Friday March 5.

Online Anchor/ReporterBob Waters

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