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With more precipitation coming, future is uncertain in Holt County, MO

Posted at 5:14 PM, Apr 30, 2019
and last updated 2019-06-05 13:50:20-04

HOLT COUNTY, Mo. — Communities in northwest Missouri are still cleaning up from floodwaters that inundated towns and farm fields in March.

Out-of-state visitors have given residents a helping hand in speeding up the process.

Volunteers have gutted much of the American Legion Post that was severely damaged in Craig, Missouri.

"The mold had started creeping up the walls because there’s about two to three feet of water in this building," George Milner, a volunteer with the Georgia Baptist Disaster Relief team, said.

The hall is the sixth structure the group has cleaned up since arriving Saturday.

"We’re hampered by the rain, of course, but we have rain gear and we’ll keep going as we can," Milner said.

Leaders with the post are grateful for the help.

"We’re going to make due," David Schmidt, commander of Story Hardin American Legion Post 164, said. "We’re actually expecting more water to come, so we don’t know if this will be the first round, the second round or third round."

That level of uncertainty is felt across Holt County.

"What's next for us is try to do what we can afford to do right now as far as getting roads open," Holt County presiding commissioner Tom Bullock said.

On Tuesday, Bullock met with the Missouri Department of Transportation and other levee officials to discuss the future of a crumbled bridge on Highway 159 just south of Fortescue, Missouri.

"This is the heart line between Nebraska and Missouri," Bullock said.

The plan is to demolish it and rebuild another in its place over the summer with a slight modification.

"They’re going to allow us to bring our levees in at the full height of what the levee is," Bullock said.

With more precipitation on the way, the situation is dire for farmers.

"There’s no protection," Bullock said. "If they were to plant something and the river were to come up again and flood it immediately, that’s a lot of money wasted and they can’t afford that. They’ve been through enough already."