BEATRICE – Beatrice officials say the West Court Street bridge could be shut down, sometime on Friday.
Beatrice Fire and Rescue Chief Brian Daake says the early Thursday afternoon river stage was at 20.7 feet, and the current projection is that the river could reach 23 feet by Friday morning or afternoon.
That would require a closure of West Court, or U.S. Highway 136 in the area of the bridge.
Daake said the current projection is that the Big Blue River in Beatrice will crest at 25.4 feet, sometime over the weekend…more than seven feet above flood stage.
Flooding on the Big Blue River in Beatrice is not expected to force closure of U.S. highway 77 at the south river bridge. A flood stage of 26 feet would have to be reached for water to begin going over U.S. 77, just south of a river gauge.
Motorists can use a bypass south of Beatrice to get around the U.S. 136 closing, if it occurs. City officials say Belvedere Street in southwest Beatrice will not serve as a bypass, because of muddy road conditions on a gravel portion of that street.