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City of Waverly Watching River Levels

WAVERLY, IA (CBS2/FOX28)- Rivers and streams across all of eastern Iowa are rising rapidly after days of heavy rain.

Just north of Waterloo, sits one city along the Cedar River that's closely monitoring the water flowing through their dam.

"I understand if the dam was not here, we'd all be sitting in water," Rick Suter said.

Suter lives along the Cedar River in downtown Waverly with his wife.

However, there are disadvantages to living along the river.

Before they moved in, he said they heard that their now basement saw more than 4 feet of water last year.

"We do sit on the balcony and it's interesting to look out and see the water keep rising and rising," he said.

So Suter is preparing for the worst and started putting sandbags along the sidewalk where he lives.

"Of course when the river rises this is where the water's gonna come in," he added.

City leaders are hoping their new rubber dam will help keep fast-moving water from flowing through downtown.

"With the rubber dam deflated, the water doesn't have to rise to get over it and it doesn't have to go over the street," Public Services Superintendent Brian Sullivan said.

Sullivan said the city built the dam in 2010 to prevent a flood like the one in 2008.

Back in 2008, the city just had a concrete dam.

But even with water levels more than 10 feet high on Saturday, the river is still below flood stage, but that could change.

"We're not expecting any major flooding. If we get storms up north, we'll have to keep monitoring it," Sullivan said.

For now, Suter can only watch from his balcony and hope for the best.

"We're probably the only ones that have this view of the city and the river but we also might consequently be the only ones whose flooded," Suter said.

City officials were able to keep roads open and Sullivan said they didn't feel it was necessary to put up flood protection barriers Saturday.

The city will continue to monitor the river levels through the weekend.

You can find more information on their website here.

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