Highway in West Beatrice, Likely Closed Through Weekend

BEATRICE – Traffic has been shut off on a U.S. Highway in part of west Beatrice, because of flooding along the Big Blue River.

Officials barricaded U.S. 136 at Sumner Street and at the east side of the river bridge, at eight a.m.

Commuter traffic was being waved through one lane of roadway by police and fire officials, just prior to the closing.   Overnight, flood water began backing up through storm sewers and was spreading across what’s known as West Court Street Friday morning, just before the closing of the road.

Beatrice Assistant Fire Chief Jake Carrel says the department is stationing response vehicles and personnel at the Gage County Fairgrounds at the west edge of the city.

:11                  “help support south”

Motorists will be detoured to a bypass south of Beatrice, known as Locust Road.

Traffic will not be able to use Belvedere Street in southwest Beatrice, because it is impassable, on a gravel section of the street.  Motorists also cannot use West Hickory Road to the northwest of Beatrice, since that was closed by flooding at a river bridge earlier in the week.

The Big Blue in Beatrice is projected to crest at just under 26 feet Sunday afternoon or evening.

Carrel was asked about the status of the South Highway 77, or South 6th Street River bridge….as to whether that might close.

:06                  “watching it close”

If the projected crest holds up, the Big Blue River will reach eight feet above flood stage.  Early Friday morning, floodwater had advanced, covering more land at the Scott Street ball field complex.

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