After a “bomb cyclone” that blew across the plains and Rocky Mountains last week, Nebraska residents are battling flood waters at historic levels.
Over 2,000 people were evacuated from the flood waters brought on by melting snow and rain along the Missouri and Niobrara rivers, according to an Associated Press article. Most of the flooding is in eastern parts of the state.
Brea Hostert, sophomore in agribusiness, lives north of Atkinson, Nebraska. She says the Niobrara is six miles from her house.
“There was a ton of flooding and bridges were broken,” Hostert said. “Lots of towns downstream were evacuated. Tons of roads were washed away. It normally only takes me 12 minutes to get to Butte, the town next to us, but now it takes an hour and 25 minutes because there is only one bridge left in the entire county.”
For Hostert, the rain and bad weather began on Wednesday, March 13, and continued all day. The next day, there were strong winds and snow.
Hostert added that the weather killed lots of livestock. Luckily, her family was away from the river and on high enough ground that they did not experience any flooding and their livestock was safe.
Only two deaths were attributed to the storm.
In Kansas, Interstate 70 was closed from Hays to the Colorado border, along with some state and national highways. Northwest Kansas experienced sustained winds of over 50 miles per hour.
“Bomb cyclone” is a common name for the weather phenomenon explosive cyclogenesis, which occurs by rapid deepening of low-pressure systems in the atmosphere.