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High Iowa River Leaves Officials Concerned

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IOWA CITY — Officials in Johnson County are continuing to urge people to stay off the overflowing Iowa River. Last week the Sheriff’s office instituted a boating ban, which will stay in place for at least another week.

“The current is swift, it’s just a dangerous situation,” said Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek.

This weekend Iowa City police cited a boater for “watercraft-prohibited operations in a disaster area.”

The citation was the first to be issued. Last year a similar ban was put in place, but officials did not cite anyone.

Iowa City police sergeant Scott Gaarde said the citation carries a fine of $25, but with court costs it is generally closer to $100.

The latest model from the Army Corps of Engineers shows Coralville Lake cresting nearly four feet below the emergency spillway on Tuesday. The high water level on the Iowa River will hold steady while the Corps keeps the outflow gate open in an attempt to empty much of the lake. Current models don’t show any changes in outflow until July 14.

“This is a prolonged event, people are just going to need to stay off the water,” Pulkrabek said.

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