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Dakota Flooding: The Latest (Saturday) - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Dakota Flooding: The Latest Saturday

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National Guard Credited

MINOT, N.D. - There are many ways in which the North Dakota National Guard defends against flooding; one of the most continuous efforts is dike walking, which has been in effect in Minot and Burlington since May 23.

 Through dike patrols, Soldiers have been able to watch for any water seepage or erosion, as well as keep an eye on the community and bring a military presence to evacuated areas. Currently the 164th Engineering Battalion and a number of other National Guard units have had their Soldiers on 12-hour shifts, walking in teams along sections of more than 20 miles of dikes from Minot to Burlington. All levees are checked at least four times in a 24-hour period.

 Sgt. Wade Piccard, of the North Dakota National Guard's 164th Engineering Battalion, was on patrol for the night shift on June 2, 2011, when he noticed something was amiss with a bridge, said Sgt. First Class Jamie Hyatt, also of the 164th Engineer Battalion.

 Working with the city and engineers, it was declared that the bridge had actually shifted two inches. Though the bridge was designed to be able to shift and the move was completely normal, bridge engineers still inspected the structure. It was able to be reopened upon inspection, but Piccard's sharp eyes have impressed many people.

 "Literally this could have been a serious incident that he prevented," said Hyatt. "The city and the Corps of Engineers were very impressed with his find."

Dam Releases

Fort Peck, Mont. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' Fort Peck Dam reached historic release levels today; the increased releases will allow the Corps to reach a targeted 50,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) by June 7. High release levels will continue throughout the summer.

 Scheduled releases - 40,000 cfs will be released by June 5, 45,000 cfs will be released by June 6, 50,000 cfs will be released by June 7

Amtrak

Amtrak Empire Builder service continues to be temporarily suspended west of St. Paul, Minn., due to flooding.  This suspension includes the daily originations of the trains from Portland, Seattle and Chicago through this Tuesday, June 7.

Daily Empire Builder train service will be maintained between Chicago and St. Paul and alternate transportation via chartered motorcoaches will represent the trains between Spokane, Wash., and both Portland and Seattle.  No Amtrak service is available for these days in Minnesota (except St. Paul), North Dakota, Montana and Idaho.

Amtrak regrets any inconvenience. This information is correct as of the above time and date. Information is subject to change as conditions warrant. Passengers are encouraged to call 800-USA-RAIL or visit Amtrak.com for schedule information and train status updates.

Flood Insurance

 South Dakota officials say they're working with federal authorities on questions about flood insurance coverage for homeowners.

Federal flood insurance does not go into effect until 30 days after it's purchased, but state officials say the starting date of flooding in South Dakota is not clear.

Governor Dennis Daugaard said Friday he's trying to find out whether the official flood event begins when water starts to rise, or when the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers decided to release water from various reservoirs.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency says it cannot waive the 30-day waiting period.

Many South Dakota residents are preparing for historic Missouri River flooding, particularly in areas of Pierre and Dakota Dunes.

Daugaard hopes answer the insurance questions within a couple of days.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

From KSFY: Pierre, SD Flooding

Even with the waters on the rise, the sandbagging effort continues in Pierre tonight. On Pierre's main drag. Sioux Avenue, the owner of this office building recruited friends to hell.him build a sandbag wall.

"it's really unbelievable. I asked for three or four people and as you can see there's 20 people."

On Pierre's south side, the sandbag walls are done, some are 6 feet high. Some try to find humor amid all this. This wall invites people to attend a beach party next Tuesday.

"Certainly something I didn't have to think about before. Kind of changes your whole outlook for summer."

For Tony Tibbs, this is his last night at home. He is moving into a hotel with his wife, daughter and their dog. He plans on being there for at least a month. He says he never in a million years thought the waters of the Missouri would threaten his home.

"No, we figured we were fall enough back where we wouldn't have any."

Tony is ready to go but he doesn't want to...so uncertain about what he will come back to.

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