COMMENTS: Water, Water Everywhere

With NBC totally preoccupied by its loss, only ABC and CBS covered what would otherwise have been Story of the Day, the floods in Iowa. ABC had Barbara Pinto (embargoed link) and Chris Bury in Cedar Rapids, where 400 city blocks are under water. Pinto showed us a submerged downtown--"the entire business district, the police department, the fire department, City Hall." Even buildings that were sandbagged to stop water coming in from outside had flooded basements as it welled up from the sewage system through toilets, sinks and drinking fountains. Bury told us that the floods were so sudden that residents more than a mile away from the Cedar River were caught by surprise. They spent the day waist deep in water retrieving stranded house pets. CBS' Dean Reynolds was down stream in the small town of Oakville, where the Iowa River and Cedar River converge just before they enter the Mississippi. Reynolds forecast that the "grotesquely swollen" Iowa River would be at 32 feet by Monday: "The problem with that is this new and improved levee is not at 32 feet--so you know what is going to happen."


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