Iowa City asking for sandbag help - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Iowa City asking for sandbag help

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Heading into the holiday weekend, Iowa City is facing a sand bag deficit that's making a lot of people nervous.

Joshua Abdo says the work filling the bags isn't so bad.

“It's just sand and bags,” Abdo, 18, said.

It isn't easy, but that's why his family is volunteering.

“We just figured our home is not in the flood area, but if it were we'd for sure want people and the city coming out and helping,” he said. “So we're just trying to be those feet and hands helping our neighbors.”

Unfortunately, volunteers like the Abdo are in short supply.

“If we get rain Saturday night, we're going to be in trouble,” Carol Sweeting, a volunteer for the Iowa City Public Works department, said.

So far, volunteers have filled about 4000 sand bags, but Sweeting said she hopes people will spend a few hours helping protect their city before they enjoy the holiday.

“Holiday weekends make it tough for everybody,” Sweeting said. “Also, the river really just sneaked up the last two days.”

Most temporary flood protections are already in place, but Sweeting said they still need more bags.

“We really don't have the levy that we hoped to have built done, and they'll be plugging holes along the way,” she said.

That's what's on Joshua's mind, bag after bag.

“Just knowing where the bags are going and who it's helping just makes it worthwhile,” he said.

The city is asking for volunteers from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Friday, and 8 a.m. - 8 p.m. Saturday.

Registration and safety training are at the Johnson County Fairgrounds.

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