Rain-swollen rivers in parts of the central U.S. state of Iowa are
beginning to recede, as residents try to get their first close-up look
at devastation left behind by several days of flooding.
Governor Chet Culver says the flooding has caused "massive" losses totaling in the billions of dollars.
the hardest-hit town of Cedar Rapids, hundreds of city blocks were
under water and some 24,000 people were forced from their homes. The
swollen Iowa River on Sunday had come down almost two meters from its
record crest of 9.5 meters, but officials said it could be another week
before the river falls below flood stage.
In Iowa City, much of the University of Iowa campus was under water, with some 20 buildings flooded.
in Iowa, along with recent tornadoes, has left at least 15 people
dead. The bad weather has destroyed many hectares of crops in the
major corn-producing state and cut off access to several key highways
There also has been serious flooding in other parts
of the upper midwestern United States. Unusually heavy spring rains
have brought on the floods.