Heavy rains soaked parts of Central Nebraska Monday night, causing another round of flooding concerns.
On Tuesday, the Nebraska Department of Highways (NDOT) reported that following overnight storms, most of Central Nebraska is encountering significant flooding impacting several roadways, including the interstate.
The NDOT was advising motorists this flooding event is rapidly evolving and to expect additional closures as water continues to move through the region.
Some areas received nearly 6 inches of rain from the storm, including Ravenna at 5.49 inches and Lexington at 5.74 inches. Grand Island received 1.43 inches, while Hastings had 2.34 inches, Greeley had 1.6 inches and Loup City received 2.22 inches.
Some areas received even heavier rainfall. Cooperative members of the Nebraska Rainfall Assessment and Information Network reported 8.8 inches 0.2 miles from Loomis, 8.3 inches at 6.1 miles southwest of Hildreth, and 7.6 inches at 0.2 miles west/northwest of Riverdale.
The heavy rainfall Monday and Tuesday is in one of Nebraska’s more productive corn and soybean areas. According to the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, for the week ending on Sunday, corn condition rated 4% poor, 20% fair, 63% good and 13% excellent.
Corn silking was 2%, well behind the 28% last year, and behind the five-year average of 16%.
Soybean condition rated 4% poor, 23% fair, 63% good and 10% excellent. Soybeans blooming was 10%, well behind the 48% last year and the 37% average.
The National Weather Service in Hastings on Tuesday issued a flood warning for the Platte River near Kearney. At 1:15 p.m. Tuesday the stage was 6.3 feet. Flood stage is 7.0 feet. The river was expected to rise to near 7.1 feet after midnight, but will fall back below flood stage early Wednesday morning.
At 7 feet, the weather service said that an access road to a small housing subdivision located directly south of Gibbon, on the south side of Interstate 80, at the northeast corner of Lowell Road and 24th Road, including Woodland Road, will begin to flood.
Also, the Wood River near Gibbon, at 1:10 p.m. Tuesday, was at 5.8 feet, with the flood stage at 15 feet. Record flooding was forecast by the NWS in Hastings, with flood stage expected to be reached Wednesday morning. It will then continue to rise to near 17.7 feet by Thursday morning.
A record crest of 17.4 feet occurred on March 14, when the river flooded much of Gibbon both north and south of Highway 30.
Highway 30 will be under water and damage to the Gibbon area will be extensive. In addition, many rural homes and roads will be flooded.
There was a flash flood watch in effect from 10 p.m. Tuesday through Wednesday morning for a portion of south Central Nebraska, including the following areas, Adams, Buffalo, Dawson, Franklin, Furnas, Gosper, Harlan, Kearney, and Phelps.
Additional rainfall of a half inch to an inch was possible Tuesday night, but the weather service said there could be localized one to two inch amounts.
While the rainfall Tuesday tonight was expected to be much less and last a shorter time, with the current flooding and saturated ground, any additional rain could cause more flooding.
Sunday’s crop report said winter wheat condition across the state rated 2% very poor, 6% poor, 22% fair, 50% good and 20% excellent. Winter wheat harvested was 2%, well behind the 22% last year and the 26% average.
Sorghum condition rated 2% poor, 19% fair, 72% good, and 7% excellent. Sorghum headed was 11%, near the 12% last year and ahead of the average of 4%.
Pasture and range conditions rated 1% very poor, 2% poor, 11% fair, 69% good and 17% excellent.
For Grand Island, dry conditions are expected to return. Sunny weather is forecast on Wednesday, with a high near 82 and a northwest wind at 10 to 15 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. The low will be about 60.
Thursday will be sunny again, with a high near 85 and a low of about 67.
Temperatures will return to the 90s on Friday through Monday, with highs in the lower 90s and lows in the upper 60s and low 70s. There is no rain in the forecast.