The latest flood forecast released today, confirmed the likely hood of major flooding in the valley, between Fargo and Wahpeton, and in the far northern valley around Pembina and Neche.
It means another major flood fight for the City of Fargo.
Our last snowstorm is what did it. The southern and far northern valley are now forecast to hit major flood levels. There is as much as 10 inches of water in the snow pack around Wahpeton, 6 inches around Fargo, and another 6 inches of water already on the ground around Pembina and Neche.
Greg Gust, National Weather Service: "No scenario that creates a no flooding situation… meaning that your 95-percentile, your risk are that there's going to be at least minor to moderate scale."
Most of the communities in the major flood zones already have flood protection in place, except Fargo where another major sandbagging effort will be needed. But, officials say you can also expect overland flooding in rural areas.
Greg Gust: "The biggest impacts are more likely to be some bridges, still some of the roadways that are near the river, and then there are places along I-29. There's some of these transportation corridors that are going to be impacted."
However, there are still a couple of major factors our there that could make this latest forecast, much worse. The possibility of a fast melt combined with a thunderstorm.
Greg Gust: "We start to get rain… any basin that's getting that heavy rain, if a thunderstorm is going over one part of a basin or another, that area is going to go to local flooding pretty quickly and it's going to be pretty dramatic."
And unfortunately, Gust says the probability of that worst case scenario happening, increases as our continued cold weather delays our melt into April.
Greater Grand Forks is already protected by its dike system to a level that's 12-feet above the forecast. However, the forecast could mean the closure of the Point Bridge.