Flood watch continues for the Grand River

(UPDATE: Thursday 10:15 p.m.) The National Weather Service said late Thursday that the ice jams upstream of Grand Rapids have broken up and the ice is moving downstream toward Ottawa County.
Tribune Staff
Mar 19, 2014

The weather bureau has a flood watch in effect for Ottawa County until 11 a.m. Friday.

The ice associated with a jam that was reported in Ada on Wednesday night moved downstream into Grand Rapids earlier Thursday.

Large chunks of ice moved through the Comstock Park area late Thursday morning. Some of the chunks moving downstream were estimated at about 8 inches thick.

A flood warning was issued for the Grand River at Comstock Park, where it briefly exceeded the flood stage of 12 feet before quickly falling after the jam broke up.

Ice jams can form quickly and cause rapid fluctuations in river levels, the weather bureau said.

Ice jams in rivers tend to form near sharp bends, in shallow areas, and near obstructions such as bridges and islands. River levels behind the ice jam will continue to rise. An ice jam break would cause a rapid increase in the water downstream and free dangerous river ice.

Those living in flood-prone areas should be prepared to take action should flooding occur. Should water levels increase and pose a threat to your property, authorities advise you to call 911 and give county officials current information about flooding in your area.

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