YANKTON, S.D. (KELO) – The James River has reached record levels in Yankton County, causing sections of the southeastern KELOLAND County to flood. From bridges and roads closing due to rising floodwaters, residents are dealing with a lot.
Water is flowing quickly down sections of the James River, even out of its banks in some areas. In fact the bridge that goes over this stretch of the river is closed.
“We’ve never had water like this ever since I’ve been here for 27 years,” owner of Fleeg’s Roadhouse, Jerry Fleege said.
Jerry Fleege owns of Fleeg’s Roadhouse which is on the east side of the bridge. He also lives in a home on that same property.
“I couldn’t believe it Saturday night it started coming up and I thought it won’t bother us, until Sunday morning we woke up and we were surrounded by water so it was about 19 inches around the house, it never came in, same for the bar, just went by the back door, so we were lucky,” Fleege said.
Not too far away you will find a trailer court, where people could voluntarily leave their homes.
Yankton County Emergency Manager, Paul Scherschligt says drivers in the county don’t have a lot of options right now.
“River stretches from the northwestern part of the county all the way through Yankton County, we have four county bridges closed,” Yankton County Emergency Manager, Paul Scherschligt said.
A section of Highway 81 north of Yankton also closed, along with other nearby roads.
“With all the road blocks and road closed signs we know it’s tough for people to get to work and it’s a longer path to go around but we ask please don’t drive around the barricades,” Scherschligt said.
Scherschligt says the river did crest on Sunday, so floodwaters should start to recede. As for Fleege, he may still have water on his property, but things could be worse.
“Everything is ok in the house and the bar, so that’s fine,” Fleege said.
The emergency manager says about 50 homes have been damaged due to the flooding. He asks if you have damage to call to report or would like to volunteer to call 211.