Cedar Rapids continues to monitor ice jam - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cedar Rapids continues to monitor ice jam


Water levels in a northwest Cedar Rapids neighborhood have continued to drop.

City officials have been successful at plugging and pumping storm sewers and keeping river water from flowing back into the area. Flood barriers have been placed to seal off low-lying areas.

Still, crews continue to keep a watchful eye on the river and are ready to respond in case river levels increase again.

Officials say they are still concerned about shifting ice and a wave of water coming down the river from the north. That wave could hit the area Thursday morning.

"That could hit us and change the ice and move things," said Mike Kuntz with the city's public works department.

The city has been questioned for not taking more aggressive measures, like using explosives to break up the ice.

Officials say that carries too much risk.

"The danger of it, the unpredictability of it -- we'd rather let nature move it," Kuntz said.

Some residents are taking no chances.

Stephanie Blahnik spent Tuesday helping her son get his belongings out of his home's lower level.

"They've got three small kids," she said. "If they have to get out, they have to get out fast."

Officials believe the worst of the flooding has already hit, but for residents like Blahnik, 2008's devastation is too real -- and too recent.

"I'm keeping my eye on it," she said. "This is my fourth time checking on (the river) today."

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