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Rivers cause problems in western, central ND

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Dickinson,North Dakota 58602
The Dickinson Press
Rivers cause problems in western, central ND
Dickinson North Dakota 1815 1st Street West 58602

BISMARCK (AP) -- The latest round of rain and snowmelt has flooded homes and roads in southern and central North Dakota.

Emmons County's emergency manager, Shawna Paul, estimated between 50 homes and 75 homes were being evacuated Sunday night in what was known as Linton's Old Town. A Red Cross shelter was set up at the school.


County spokeswoman Marlys Ohlhause said North Dakota National Guard members were using boats on Monday morning to ferry about five rural residents from their farms.

Richard Sorenson, the Mercer County emergency manager, said about 40 families abandoned their homes in Beulah on Sunday and early Monday morning. The county's dive and rescue team used a boat to rescue two people from their homes on Monday, he said.

"There are no injuries -- just a lot of people stressed out and worried," Sorenson said.

"I can't think, really, of one road that isn't affected," said Stephen Perry, a Beulah city councilman working on flood disaster plans.

Perry said about 400 residents in the south part of Beulah were told to prepare for possible evacuation due to a threat from the Knife River.

Sorenson said the river was expected to drop late Monday. But for some, it's too late, he said.

"A significant portion of south Beulah is inundated with flood waters," Sorenson said. "Basements are flooded and there is a significant loss of property at this point. But until the water goes down, we won't know how much."

Perry said the city's emergency center could take people in, and the city has been publicizing the potential flood threat since January. If residents do evacuate, it likely will not be for long, he said.

"Traditionally, floods in this area are not like the Red River Valley, where it lasts," Perry said.

Emmons County officials said U.S. 83 was closed at Linton due to water on the road. Parts of state Highway 13 and Highway 34 also were closed. No travel was advised in Emmons and LaMoure counties.

In Mott, seven families on the west side of town were evacuated along the Cannonball River.

"It just keeps coming up," Mayor Troy Mosbrucker said Sunday.

The river was expected to crest early Monday. Then the forecast called for the area to get 10 inches of snow. Mosbrucker said that could mean problems for the evacuated homes without heat.

Around the area, city and county officials staffed emergency centers and kept watch.

"When Mother Nature decides to do her thing, Mother Nature wins every time," Perry said.