Jul 2, 2010 2:44 PM by Greg Boyce

Des Moines River threatens

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Des Moines River in Iowa is now expected to crest this afternoon at about 3.5 feet above flood stage -- but still five feet lower than it was when a levee protecting a neighborhood in Des Moines failed two years ago.

Officials spotted a crack late yesterday in the same part of the levee that failed in 2008, flooding the small working-class neighborhood of Birdland.  But crews walked the levee early today, avoiding the cracked area, and saw no other damage.  Even after the river crests today, the danger may not be over. Storms are forecast to return on Sunday and possibly continue through Tuesday.

A weather service hydrologist says the most likely result of that would be that the river and the reservoir that's designed to protect the city from flooding would return to normal levels less quickly.


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