As afternoon turned to evening during the fourth day of historic flooding in Fremont, City officials were focusing their efforts on plugging two levee breaches near County Road 19 which originally occurred sometime late Friday night.
“Our efforts right now are trying to get the breaches out at County Road 19 plugged to decrease the flow into the Fremont,” City Administrator Brian Newton told the Fremont Tribune via phone early Sunday evening. “That is the flow of water that is coming into Fremont at the moment.”
Of the two levee breaches, one occurred just west of County Road 19 by the Fremont Rod and Gun Club and the other on the east side of County Road 19 in the State Lakes.
Platte River water is overflowing from those breaches into the State Lakes, then Lake Leba and then flowing all the way up to Ridge Road. It had been flooding down south along Ridge Road toward Hormel Park, but as that area became inundated with water, it pushed north over to Military, which prompted sandbagging efforts late Friday night.
It also overflowed a dike west of Pierce Street, sending flood waters through Inglewood and across Broad Street and down south through the Costco and WholeStone Farms area, toward Old Highway 275, where further sandbagging efforts occurred.
Newton told the Tribune that he and Mayor Scott Getzschman got an aerial view of the situation during a flight on a Nebraska National Guard helicopter on Sunday.
“We went out today to verify that there are no more breaches and to verify where the water was coming from,” he said.
Newton also dispelled rumors that an ice jam break on the Platte upstream near Columbus on Sunday was going to cause another surge of flood waters to pour into Fremont.
“We’ve had rumors of three or four surges coming through,” he said. “It does not affect us, it may be out on the river, but it’s not affecting the water in Fremont.”
Newton said water from the Platte had begun to recede on Sunday morning.
“It’s slowly going down, so that’s the good news,” he said. “It’s just a matter of time.”
Platte River water levels had dropped below the flood stage at North Bend as of Sunday evening, after peaking at over 11 feet at the United States Geological Survey gauge site on Friday. Flood stage at the site is approximately 8 feet.
As of 5:30 p.m. the City of Fremont had also issued a curfew at Mayor Getzschman’s direction for certain flood affected areas of the city. The curfew begins at 10 p.m. and lasts until 4 a.m. and encompasses the area south fo the Union Pacific Railroad tracks and west of South Platte Avenue that lie within the city limits.
The curfew will continue on a nightly basis until further notice, and was issued to prvent concerns about looting, according to information from the City of Fremont.
There are currently five shelters in Fremont, with Fremont Middle School accepting those who have been displaced by the flood.
Clarmar Elementary School is the location of the Volunteer Reception Center (VRC). The center is registering volunteers, accepting donations, and distributing supplies to those displaced by the flood.
Volunteer registration and donations will be accepted until 7:00 p.m. Volunteers are being asked to use the east doors to register at the school at 1865 E. 19th Street.
Supplies can be donated at the VRC by using the north doors in the circle drive at Clarmar Elementary.
People who are displaced, but are not currently at a shelter, can receive supplies at the VRC from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the north doors of Clarmar Elementary.