Forum staff reports, Published April 30 2013
Red River expected crest dropped again, could crest Tuesday nightFARGO – The Red River was poised to crest Tuesday night, with forecasters from the National Weather Service expecting the river to peak at 33.3 feet here.
That’s nearly 5 feet below the low end of the 38 to 40 feet range forecasters were calling for last week and far below mid-April forecasts that suggested the Red River in Fargo had a 40 percent chance of topping the 2009 record of 40.84 feet.
It’s also lower than the 37-foot crest predicted Sunday.
If the river does top out at 33.3 feet, it will be the 12th-highest Fargo flood on record.
By 10:15 p.m., the Red was at 33.24 feet in Fargo, its peak up to that point.
The higher predictions prompted city and county officials to plan to protect against a larger flood.
Fargo filled 1.1 million new sandbags, giving the city a reserve of 1.8 million, but only placed 100,000 bags for sandbag dikes that will remain dry.
City officials said the only flood protection measure that was holding back water Tuesday was the downtown levee on Second Street, needed at the major flood stage of 30 feet.
Some of Fargo’s flood defenses could be torn down as soon as Thursday, said City Engineer Mark Bittner.
Even the Second Street levee, which closes down the First Avenue North bridge, could be removed by next week, he said.
The river is projected to begin falling from its expected crest sometime today, according to weather service forecasts. The river should drop below 30 feet sometime Sunday morning.
Forum staff reports