Sioux Falls Prepares for River Flooding
SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Officials in Sioux Falls are preparing for flooding along the Big Sioux River by installing an elaborate sandbag system in a neighborhood along the river, while the South Dakota Air National Guard has moved its fighter jets to another airfield.
Between 800 and 900 tons of sand have been brought in to fill nearly 40,000 sandbags to protect more than 80 homes from flooding expected early next week. The work comes as Sioux Falls residents are still recovering from last week's flooding that prompted the rescue of 17 people.
Known as a trap-bag system, plastic bags filled with sand are being stacked in a wall 2 feet (0.6 meters) tall. The bags will be open on the top to allow water to fill the bag before overflowing.
Sioux Falls engineer Brad Ludens tells the Argus Leader the trap bags have successfully been used in Fargo, North Dakota, and other communities.
The South Dakota Air National Guard in Sioux Falls is also on alert. The Guard has moved its F-16 fighter jets to an alternate airfield and pre-staged other equipment in case troops are called upon to assist in the flood efforts.
KELO-TV reports that crews have been stockpiling sandbags at the base for the past few days to protect the millions of dollars in assets and property on site.
Offutt Air Force base in Omaha is still recovering from last week's flooding in Nebraska. A third of the base was covered in water even after crews used nearly a quarter of a million sandbags and hundreds of flood barriers to try and protect the military installation.
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