Rivers, creeks in Jefferson and Saline Counties are “bank full” with more rain possible

Many parts of Nebraska are dealing with heavy rains and flash flooding this week as chances for rain continue through Saturday in most locations.

John McKee, Emergency management director for Saline and Jefferson Counties, says most rivers and streams in the two counties are “bank full” with minor, lowland flooding already underway.

“I think along all of the tributaries, we’re going to see at least some minor, lowland flooding,” McKee said. “You’re going to have to be careful on some of these county roads that are down along the river that are low. Don’t drive through those areas.”

Chances of rain for the area persist through this Saturday. Tropical Storm Gordon is expected to make landfall on the northern Gulf Coast Tuesday night and Wednesday morning as a Category 1 hurricane. The remains of that storm are expected to reach southeast Nebraska by Saturday afternoon, according to the latest forecasts.

This likely means more moisture for those already dealing with minor flooding.

“All of the folks that live along the tributaries in Jefferson and Saline County should monitor future forecasts,” McKee said.

In Gage County, the Big Blue River reached the flood stage of 18 feet Tuesday morning. Beatrice City Street crews blocked off Memorial Drive, just south of the Big Blue River Bridge along West Court Street.

Severe weather went through both Jefferson and Saline counties on Saturday night. McKee says a wind gust of 83 miles per hour was recorded in Fairbury, and there were a number of downed tree limbs in the area, but no there was no significant property damage reported.

Fairbury had 2.75 inches and Wilber reported 3.17 through Sunday morning. Both cities reported nearly three additional inches of rain as of 7 a.m. Tuesday.

Some locations upstream from Beatrice received three to six inches of rain over the holiday weekend. South of Beatrice into northeast Kansas, rainfall totals exceeded nine inches near Marysville and Manhattan.

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