Minnesotan’s are dealing with a record breaking flood that’s almost upon them. Right now, north of us in Fargo, North Dakota and Grand Forks, MN, the rivers will be cresting at a higher level than they predicted a few weeks ago and people are scrambling. Right now they are saying it will crest at 41 feet.
Now it’s been raining and on top of that, just into the border into Canada, they are getting blasted with a blizzard and nothing was even open today. The weathermen are saying it’s better off being snow than rain at this point since it won’t be an immediate problem because it’s go ing to have to melt.
I know many people and have many relatives just waiting to get the news to evacuate. The Red River, which runs north, runs right along many of their homes. The dikes and culverts just can’t handle all the water and the land is so flat it just takes over and what’s in Minnesota and North Dakota today, will be in Canada tomorrow. Lisa told me her yard is under water and she has ponds where she didn’t have them before. I’ve been up there when it’s been like this and there are many people I know who right now, can’t get out of their homes with the mud and water the way it is. I pray for them because I now how devastating it is for them.
This is a picture I got from one of my cousins and it’s supposed to be a road and a corn field.
When I was getting my haircut yesterday, Linda and I were talking about this. Her daughter’s boyfriend who’s in college up north was going yesterday to fill sand bags. They need two million and are a half a million shy of that. But it got us to talking and wondering about a couple of things.
Why do people live there was number one? Well, I’m not sure I would want to move. Many of these people have lived there all their lives. In my memory, this has happened bad like this 3 times and I’m 51 so it’s not like it happens every year. But then the number 2 thing would be, can’t they do anything about it so it doesn’t happen again? Like bigger dikes or something? I’m just asking. I have no idea. I know in Canada, they built bigger dikes but that hasn’t seemed to help anything.
So the number 1 question we could think of is what the heck do they do with all the sand bags from previous years? Can’t they build a building to store them so they don’t need to fill 2 million each time this happens? Lo and behold, not even 10 minutes after I’d written down this idea for a post, this came on WCCO’s Good Question. I just looked at Paul and laughed because I’d just told him “hold on, I need to write down an idea.” He’s used to that!!! So here what they said about reusing sand bags.
In Minnesota: dry sandbags can be reused. Each city or county deals with them differently. In some cases, the bags are stored and reused. In others, the bags are busted up, and the sand is used as fill for roads or sidewalks.
Why don’t they keep sandbags in flood-prone areas in storage? They keep some, but think of the storage issues. Plus, sandbags are very heavy. To move them in mass quantities would be more difficult than moving the sand, moving the bags, and filling on-site.
Wet sandbags are trickier. Think about what’s in flood water. It’s not generally clean water. Minnesota’s Pollution Control Agency told me last year that they typically go to a landfill, because it’s hard to figure out what else is in the water. It’s not worth the expense.
I guess I’m not sure why I wrote this post other than I’m very worried and sorry for all my friends and family who are up there dealing with this right now. So please think of them and pray for them or talk to who you talk to and silently wish them well.