News2019 Flood


Flood waters recede, road inspections begin

Once flooded, roads now in need or repair
Posted at 5:12 PM, Mar 19, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-19 19:33:48-04

As floodwaters recede, we're starting to see how area roads have been impacted, and some still aren't safe.

Water may not be covering some roads anymore, but the aftermath is still evident.

Omaha's highway maintenance superintendent for the Nebraska Department of Transportation, Jim Laughlin, says how fast the water was moving had a big impact on how roads were completely washed away in some places.

"The ground gets saturated, and there's nothing supporting the road underneath, and there's water rushing over it, washing away the underside, and it all just erodes out and drops."

Part of west dodge road as it turns into highway 275 was hit hard, and will take time to fix.

"We'll inspect it and asses the situation and see what it takes, come up with a plan, and then some contractors will come in and do the needed repairs and we'll restore it just as fast as we can," explains Laughlin.

On the flip side, once the water went down crews were able to inspect West Maple Street and see it was still intact.

"That was a good day, when we did a little inspection on that and it's like, this is good," adds Laughlin.

Laughlin says the water probably rose and fell slower on maple, which is typically less destructive.

Other road closures like Highway 75 northbound make for a long drive for those trying to get north from areas like Plattsmouth.

"I'm going to Bellevue, but this is 10 minutes, 15 minutes. Now I'm going to drive 45 minutes to an hour, to get to Bellevue," explains Jesse Hernandez.

Road crews need drier days to complete inspections and clean up debris so repairs can get underway.

And as they do, crews ask for patience and understanding.