Thursday was day number four.
Jamey Robinson, director of Mahaska County Emergency Management, along with CERT members continued to distribute water from the City Park Building on Thursday. The water distribution effort began this past Monday after a boil order was put in place for New Sharon. A message on the city of New Sharon's Web site Monday morning explained that, “Due to the rapidly rising North Skunk River, the City of New Sharon has issued a boil order to all of its water customers. Late last night, the waters of the North Skunk River flooded the City’s water facilities north of town. The City is also requesting that all of its residents and customers conserve water until further notice.”
Water has been distributed to both those able to get to the City Park Building and those who have not been able to get there. CERT members have made numerous deliveries to homes of those unable to come to the City Park Building.
“We actually brought in a trailer yesterday just because of the large quantity of people that we're delivering to,” said Robinson on Thursday morning.
Sandbagging was done Tuesday evening at New Sharon's water facilities north of town because of the potential for the North Skunk River to crest within 72 hours, said Robinson. Oskaloosa and New Sharon fire departments, as well as CERT members helped with this sandbagging, he said.
“They were able to sandbag around the perimeter and actually, last night, we took boats back out and reinforced it just because of the large amount of moisture that north-central Iowa received, which is in our North Skunk basin,” said Robinson Thursday morning. “So, we're anticipating the water to rise.”
On Thursday morning, Robinson said he expected flash flooding to occur again.
Robinson said he hoped the boil order for New Sharon could be lifted by Friday morning. This is pending testing of the water, he said. Even when the boil order is lifted, Robinson said conservation of water is important.
As of around 10:30 a.m. Thursday, two of the New Sharon water facility's four pumps were up and running, according to Robinson.
According to the National Weather Service, thunderstorm chances were expected to persist Friday, with a slight chance of showers on Saturday. Sunday and Monday look to be dry.
Herald City Editor Andy Goodell can be reached at news2oskyherald.com.