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flood pictures from the red river

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 10:33
pyro6999 View Drop Down
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as some of you may know, i was called to go to the fargo north dakota area on thursday afternoon. we arrived in south fargo to aid in building up of the clay dikes along the red river. we spent 16hrs straight building up the dike. it was amazing to see so much dirt equipment in one area working together. people from many companies from many places were there. i left friday morning. my father in law and brother in law ended up working there for 36 hrs straight before they went home for a while. im not sure how many hours they ended up working but it was basically a weeks worth of time. after i took a 4hr nap my fire dept pager went off, our chief had got a request for fire fighters to show up in moorhead minnesota to help out. so me and two other guys from our dept. showed up there at about 2200hrs and when we arrived our division commander told us that he didnt have anything for us to do, and we would be going to a high school gym to sleep for the night. so we ate some food, and then all of a sudden the commander came back in to where we were and said get your sh*t on and get on that bus as quick as you can we have a situation. so we boarded the bus and took a suicide ride (the driver was plum crazy) i didnt know buses could corner like that. we showed up in a neighborhood in moorhead where we were needed. apparently earlier in the day a sand bag dike had been breached by the water and a bunch of school aged kids were working in the area and they had to be evacuated. they got over 400 people out of that neighborhood in less than 10 min. so they decided from then on they would only send fire fighters and national guard personel in that area. we showed up at a house got our orders from the national guard sgt. and proceeded to haul some serious ass building a new dike. we had a skid steer a front end loader and a tele handler all with palette forks bringing us palettes of sand bags and they couldnt keep up. 24 palettes to a semi load and we unloaded the semi in less than 20 min. here are some pictures from the following day as we were doing inspections.


































Edited by pyro6999 - March/30/2009 at 11:05
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when i was there they had lost three homes on that street. as far as i know they havent lost any more on that street. it was crazy to see all that water.

here is part of the wall we built in less than 3 hrs we had to basically turn the peoples home into a secondary containment area. flood protection i figured out was a cut throat sorta business, some times you gotta lose a home to save the whole block.






Edited by pyro6999 - March/30/2009 at 11:27
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 13:04
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Unbelievable.  Good for you, pyro.  Excellent   I hope all that water is too frozen to run inside....I don't know....I hope it goes down.....maybe they can drain the yards back into the river if it falls.........
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 13:06
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we talked to a guy who had lived on that street for 20 yrs and he said that the river under normal conditions is 150 yards away from his house, thats a lot of damn water!! but what it really showed me was the fact that the sense of the american spirit is alive an well up here. people working together for the good of people they dont know, and there hasnt been any looting or rioting or anything else, just honest hard working folks coming together to get it done.

i forgot to mention that the red river flows backwards, from south to north, unlike most rivers, which is what really compounds the problems.


when i talked to my brother in law he told me he had taken pictures from the site where they did some digging and hauling of material for the dikes, he said it was strange to go into a scoccer field at a school and just digging it up. they turned that field into a 20ft deep hole.


Edited by pyro6999 - March/30/2009 at 17:03
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 17:35
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Good work!  I'm sure those people appreciated your help!  Excellent
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 17:38
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Thunbs Up  You're doing a good thing!!!  I can't imagine dealing with a flood when it is that cold (usually happens in warm weather here)...that's gotta make things miserable.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 17:39
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Originally posted by pyro6999 pyro6999 wrote:

 ... he said it was strange to go into a scoccer field at a school and just digging it up. they turned that field into a 20ft deep hole.
In the winter it can be an ice hockey rink and in the summer it can be stocked for fishing.
 
Man it sucks that it is happening when it is that cold out, bad enough in warmer weather.


Edited by Urimaginaryfrnd - March/30/2009 at 17:40
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 20:36
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I'm sure that they appreciate it.  You will have to go back after the flooding is done to see the final outcome.  Keep up the good work.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 21:40
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Thanks for posting the pics.  That is impressive!  A lot of water.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/30/2009 at 22:31
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 Those were extremely painful pictures to look at.
 I agree with those who have said that dealing with a flood is bad enough in warm weather, but it has got to be absolutely miserable in snow and ice.
 The stench of sewage and rotten vegetation probably isn't there, but it WILL be later. Those look like nice homes in nice neighborhoods. What a shame!
 
 My heart bleeds for those people and I salute guys like pyro who go there to help out.
 
It is pretty cool to see firsthand, everyone helping everyone else out, instead of robbing and looting like has occurred in other places of recent memory.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 07:48
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Originally posted by RONK RONK wrote:

 Those look like nice homes in nice neighborhoods. What a shame!
 
No, that is not a shame. That is stupid. Those homes were built in a flood plain. Now, the states and the feds will have to spend 1-1.5 billion to build dikes, and we'll all spend more on taxes to pay for that and on home insurance to cover the cost of those "nice homes".


Edited by anweis - March/31/2009 at 07:49
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Pyro - they had mentioned on the news that they were dynamiting some of the ice jams, did you witness any of that?  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 08:48
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Originally posted by anweis anweis wrote:

Originally posted by RONK RONK wrote:

 Those look like nice homes in nice neighborhoods. What a shame!
 
No, that is not a shame. That is stupid. Those homes were built in a flood plain. Now, the states and the feds will have to spend 1-1.5 billion to build dikes, and we'll all spend more on taxes to pay for that and on home insurance to cover the cost of those "nice homes".
Roll Eyes
the whole red river valley is a flood plain. they built dikes in the 60's they are already there and paid for, we just had to add to them because they were only built to handle 30 some thing feet, that dont cut it on a river flowing at 41ft.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 08:51
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Originally posted by anweis anweis wrote:

Originally posted by RONK RONK wrote:

 Those look like nice homes in nice neighborhoods. What a shame!
 
No, that is not a shame. That is stupid. Those homes were built in a flood plain. Now, the states and the feds will have to spend 1-1.5 billion to build dikes, and we'll all spend more on taxes to pay for that and on home insurance to cover the cost of those "nice homes".
 
That may very well be true but my heart goes out to those people.  This is also a personal tragedy.


Edited by Dogger - March/31/2009 at 08:58
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Originally posted by anweis anweis wrote:

Originally posted by RONK RONK wrote:

 Those look like nice homes in nice neighborhoods. What a shame!
 
No, that is not a shame. That is stupid. Those homes were built in a flood plain. Now, the states and the feds will have to spend 1-1.5 billion to build dikes, and we'll all spend more on taxes to pay for that and on home insurance to cover the cost of those "nice homes".
 The designated boundaries of so-called "flood plains" change every year.
A huge percentage of the land area of Iowa flooded last year.  Does that mean that those are now "flood plains" and shouldn't have been rebuilt?
 My Wisconsin home is not in a "floodplain".  We bought it after choosing not to buy one that was. I talked to a 90-something lifelong village resident before purchasing our home. He assured me that the nearby Baraboo River had never gotten high enough to cause problems, and so we bought. Five years later, in June of 2008, the river crested 14 feet above normal and nearly ruined our turn-of- the- century house.  Should I not have rebuilt? Believe me, we wondered that.
 If you rule out all land that could potentially flood, almost NOBODY would have a place to build, except the rich guy on the hilltop.
 By the way, FEMA funds alloted to us were minimal.  Most of the cost was borne out of pocket by us with some help from some very generous friends. (Pyro was one of them, BTW.)
 (Incidently, the house that we rejected that WAS in a floodplain sustained no real damage in the 2008 floods.)
 Your comments reek of ignorance.
  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 09:53
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Originally posted by anweis anweis wrote:

Originally posted by RONK RONK wrote:

 Those look like nice homes in nice neighborhoods. What a shame!
 
No, that is not a shame. That is stupid. Those homes were built in a flood plain. Now, the states and the feds will have to spend 1-1.5 billion to build dikes, and we'll all spend more on taxes to pay for that and on home insurance to cover the cost of those "nice homes".
 
I don't care what the government uses our tax money for.  What difference does it make?  They take it anyway!  The can pound it up they're a** and I still don't have the money anymore.  So who cares HOW they waste it....they waste it anyway!!  Maybe in this case they will actually do something constructive rather than buying a $900 toilet seat for the Space Shuttle.  [ does anyone know what the Space Shuttle does, anyway??  Besides fly around?? ]  
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 10:11
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Being from the South, I just can't get used to looking at flooding, snow and ice all at the same time.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 10:21
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right now that clod weather is saving them, the longer the ground stays frozen the better their chances are to walk away without a flooded house. only problem is that the ice jams can really slow things down. if the temp was to spike to say 60 tomorrow you would see chaos on the 6:00 news, i promise that. this is scary stuff to me i will be honest.i looked at the work we firefighters did, and if i were a home owner in the valley i cannot fathom the amount of time and work it would take to build a huge sang bag dike by hand by myself or even with the help of some friends. it took basically 100 of us to build a 200ft long wall that was like 3-4ft wide and 2-4ft tall. imagine how long it would take a normal family of 4 to build one 400ft long that had to be 6ft tall and 12 ft wide??


Edited by pyro6999 - March/31/2009 at 10:52
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Flooding is bad news.  The problems really don't start until the water goes down.  I had several friends in Shreveport a few years ago that got several feet of water in their houses when a bayou flooded (this is in our Red River Valley).  All had to move out for several months after during the rebuilding process.  I was helping one clean out the kitchen cabinets.  Every pot, pan, plate and glass was full of mud or muddy water.

My heart goes out to the folks up there.

 

Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 10:54
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thankfully they dont have the snakes and bugs and other nasty stuff that can be found down south.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 11:15
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Originally posted by SD Dog SD Dog wrote:

Pyro - they had mentioned on the news that they were dynamiting some of the ice jams, did you witness any of that?  


no, im not aware of them doing that near fargo/moorhead. i know for a fact that they did do that on the missouri river near bismark/mandan though.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 12:01
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pyro, one of the two Governors was talking about dikes and $$ last night on the news. If course it's a tragedy.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 12:07
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that doesnt matter, i dont care how much money its costing me, i care enough about my neighbors that if my taxes have to go up because we saved many peoples homes and lives i will gladly pay it. maybe thats the difference between you and me. im sworn to protect life and property as a firefighter. i run into dangerous situations where others are running away from danger, preservation of life is more important to me than $$$.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 12:11
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I think the issue here was addressing the human tragedy/cost as a FIRST priority.
 
Now lets talk about if the houses were allowed to be built in an area they should not have been and what if anything can be done.  Others have already made the point that some areas that were not previously known as flood areas may now be, things do change.
Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)     Back to Top Direct Link To This Post Posted: March/31/2009 at 12:17
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this is what they would consider a 100 year flood and most of the homes in the neighborhoods in the fargo moorhead area are built in the 100yr flood plain, and a lot more are built further back yet in the 500 year flood plain. local regulations especially in mn do not allow you to put your home within so many feet of any waters of the state and rivers are no exception. like i said most of the homes in that neighborhood are a good 450ft off the river when its flowing inside of its banks. they havent seen a flood like that since the 1800's in the red river valley. part of the problem there is that the ground is very much composed of clay and doesnt readily absorb water like the sandy soils i have around my home. i dont blame any of the people for living where they do.
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