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New Hartford Battles Flood Waters Behind A Berm

NEW HARTFORD, IA (CBS2/FOX28) – Flooding is not out of the ordinary in New Hartford, just not to this extent. The town is virtually cut off and it’s not over yet. The forecast for tonight is more rain.

“We never thought that it would be almost even with what is was in 2008,” said the Assistant Director of New Hartford EMS Angie Callan.

Town officials say most of the area’s 670 people left even before the mandatory evacuation was announced just after 3:30 am. Five years ago, the Beaver Creek crested nearly three feet above flood stage. This time, it’s about a half foot lower.

“If this happened in 2008, it would be a completely different story,” said Callan.

That’s because of a system of berms that the town installed. It was part of a two-year project to keep New Hartford safe. The town might be wet, but it’s resident are ok.

Safety is just a short drive north where the Red Cross set up a shelter in Shell Rock.

“It seems like during stress, if you can just sit down and relax, that’s a good starting point,” said Bremer County Emergency Management’s Kip Laduge.

“Everyone’s been accounted for,” said New Hartford Fire Department Chief Brad Shipper. “A lot of people stay with family. A lot of people just went to work.”

If they need an extra hand, the Red Cross shelter will stay open for the next few days.

“We’re ready for them if they come,” said Laduge.

Now people here are just watching the skies. More rain could push Beaver Creek even higher and keep residents out of their homes that much longer

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