Cedar Rapids Flood Recedes; Des Moines Levee Fails

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — The dark, filthy water that has inundated all of downtown Cedar Rapids, Iowa, has begun to recede after forcing 24,000 people to flee.

But those residents who remain are being urged to take extreme measures to avoid overwhelming the city’s only remaining drinking water source.

Officials warn that if people don’t cut back on non-essential water use, the town will run out of drinking water within three to four days.

More than 400 city blocks and 3,900 homes are flooded in Cedar Rapids, where early estimates put property damage at 736 million dollars.

Meanwhile, a levee breach in the state capital of Des Moines has flooded a neighborhood of more than 200 homes, a high school and about three dozen businesses.

At least three deaths in Iowa are blamed on the flooding, which has prompted the governor to issue disaster proclamations for 83 of the state’s 99 counties.