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Missouri River expected to reach historical levels

Posted 5/25/11 (Wed)

By Tina Foreman
Farmer Staff Writer

After a historically wet winter and equally wet spring, it should come as no surprise that the Missouri River is reaching historically high levels.
“We just received notice from the National Weather Service that the Missouri River will reach just below its highest level ever on Wednesday, May 25,” says Jerry Samuelson, McKenzie County Emergency manager. “The forecast is that because of heavy rains in Montana, the river will rise three feet between Monday afternoon and Wednesday.”
According to Samuelson, on Monday the Missouri River was at 25.4 feet at the Highway 85 Bridge near Williston, and the National Weather Service has predicted that it will reach 27.8 feet sometime on Wednesday.
“The historical high for that area was recorded in 1912 at 28 feet,” says Samuelson. “The water has only reached 27 feet one other time and that was in 1975.”
Samuelson urged anyone camping along the river or with property along the river to take precautions.
“The prediction is for the river near Williston, but the water is going to go up all along the river. That means anyone with property at Tobacco Gardens and McKenzie Bay or any other point along the river needs to prepare for higher water,” states Samuelson. “They are predicting a three-foot increase in two days. That’s a lot of water coming really fast.”