UPDATE: Flood watch, flood warning put into effect for Cedar River, Turtle Creek

Published 8:34 am Friday, June 21, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

With serious amounts of rain having fallen already and more expected to fall into the weekend, the National Weather Service has installed a flood watch and flood warning for the Cedar River in Austin and near Lansing and Turtle Creek.

The  watch was placed into effect at 7 a.m. and is expected to stretch through to 1 p.m. Saturday afternoon. The flood warning will go into effect at around 7:45 a.m. Saturday and is expected to go to around 8:30 a.m. on Monday morning.

According to the NWS, the river is expected to start rising early this afternoon and is predicted to crest at around 19 feet meaning moderate flooding sometime early Sunday morning. Twenty feet is labeled as major flooding. 

Email newsletter signup

Turtle Creek, meanwhile, is predicted to crest at 14.50 feet which is labeled as major flooding by the NWS.

In a release Friday afternoon, the Austin Police Department’s Capt. Todd Clennon said that the department will be monitoring neighborhoods, but that any additional warnings will be issued via media, social media and the Integrated Public Alert messaging system (IPAWS) for cell phones.

“The IPAWS system can be forced through to cell phones via the Mower County Emergency Management System and you do not have to be a member or have an app,” Clennon said. “It automatically hits cell phones in or enters a warning area.”

Clennon said that remaining residential areas of Turtle Creek in Austin should be receiving a message around 6 p.m. tonight. He also said that with few structures along the Cedar River due to flood mitigation efforts, much of the impacted areas will be the park system.

He warns people to be wary of flooded areas and fast-moving water that could contain debris.

“It is very dangerous to enter or attempt to cross flood waters, so please do not,” he said in the release. “Be alert for flooded areas in the City including parks and do not go around any barricades.”

The Cedar River had already jumped its banks earlier this week due to heavy rainfall and flowed into most of Driesner Park’s south side.

Rains are expected to continue throughout the day and into tonight with a chance of a quarter to a half inch of rain this afternoon and another two inches of rain is possible tonight.

A chance of rain and storms continues into Saturday with an additional three quarters of an inch of rain possible.

The system drenching the area is expected to leave the area heading into Saturday night with sun returning Sunday and a temperature of 80 predicted.