UPDATE: Large debris flowing through Lake Delhi Dam - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Large debris flowing through Lake Delhi Dam

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DELHI (KWWL) -- Gov. Culver has issued a Disaster Declaration for Delaware and Jones Counties following flash flooding and the complete breach of the Lake Delhi Dam.

Anyone downstream from the dam, living along the river or in low-lying areas should evacuate immediately.

Boats, propane tanks, and even a maintenance shed are flowing through the breached dam and heading downstream. A Department of Natural Resources specialist reported seeing fully grown trees washed downstream in less than a minute.

Culver is in Monticello talking with emergency personnel who are preparing for the rising water. He has also activated the National Guard and the state Emergency Operation Center to coordinate emergency activities.

Because of the breach, the National Weather Service has issued a flash flood warning for northeastern Jones and southeastern Delaware Counties until 6:45 p.m. Saturday.

The National Weather Service says that a worst case scenario for Opinion is that flooding will impact much of the town from the river up to 3rd Street or Highway 38.

They say that a worst case scenario in Monticello would be flood waters impacting the town from the river up to Highway 38 and should crest late Saturday afternoon or early Saturday evening.

The Lake Delhi Dam, located on the Maquoketa River, has a cement-constructed spillway in the center and earthen structures on either side. The DNR says the road over the dam began collapsing around 1 p.m. as recording floodwaters cut a 30-foot wide swath on the south side of the dam and began falling more than 40 feet in the river below.

The dam was fully inspected in May of 2009. A few minor repairs were still needed following the flooding in 2008, but there were no major structural problems according to the DNR.

Law enforcement has encouraged people living along the river between the dam and Maquoketa to leave their homes. The voluntary evacuation impacts about 1,200 people.

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