36,000 Homeless in Iowa

“About 36,000 Iowans in 11 counties are homeless, Gov. Chet Culver said Sunday. In Cedar Rapids, 25,000 people were forced from their homes. The Federal Emergency Management Agency is taking applications for disaster assistance.

“This is far over record flooding. It is of historic proportions,” David Miller, administrator of the Iowa Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, said at a briefing. Eighty-three of Iowa’s 99 counties have been declared state disaster areas. Three deaths were attributed to flooding.”

Iowa Homeless

“…the state’s worst damage to date was in Cedar Rapids, where early estimates put property damage at $736 million, said fire department spokesman Dave Koch. He said about 9.2 square miles of the city was affected by flooding.

The immediate concern there had switched from the water flowing in the streets to that flowing out of people’s taps.

Three of the city’s four drinking water collection wells were contaminated by murky, petroleum-laden floodwater, leaving only about 15 million gallons a day for the city of more than 120,000 and the suburbs that depend on its water system. Officials warned that if people didn’t cut back on nonessential uses, drinking water would run out within a couple of days.”

Incredible Destruction