City of Olin Prepares for Flooding, Despite Lower Crest Forecasts

By Dave Franzman, Reporter

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By Aaron Hepker

OLIN, Iowa - If earlier projections of record flooding on the Wapsipinicon River don't prove true, it won't disappoint anyone in the Jones County community of Olin.

In Olin, the Wapsi was still rising a few inches an hour Thursday afternoon and probably flooded the basements of about a dozen homes. However, that is becoming an almost normal situation in the community as this is the second flood this month.

City clerk Jean McPherson said the community is all prepared with sandbags around homes that need it. The community may still plug some storms drains later to keep Highway 38 through town open.

"There is more waqter to come, we're anticipating a couple of feet more. But at this level, it spreads out so far it will not get into first floors of homes," McPherson said.

Another flood veteran, Joe Schroeder, agreed with the more optimistic assessment of flood levels. This is Schroeder's 12th flood in eight years and he says he's developed a pretty good idea for what the river is going to do.

"I don't think it's going to get near as high as they said at first. Right now we're in a safe zone and we're going to be fine," Schroeder said.

Sand bagging operations continued in Anamosa until Thursday afternoon. But it was at a at a much slower pace.

Ron French, assistant Anamosa Fire Chief, said the city has all the sandbags necessary and was calling off any plans to make more.

About a dozen volunteers were making sandbags Thursday morning but only for people who might need them for private property.

French also said temporary berms built by the city appeared to be adequate to hold back any water.

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