More Levees At Risk As Flooding Continues

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Residents from Iowa to Missouri are preparing for the worst Wednesday, as floodwaters threaten to overflow some 30 more levees along the Mississippi.

The swollen river has already broken through 20 levees this week. And since June 6, the Midwest flooding has killed 24 and injured 148.

"We've been fortifying the levy with concrete barriers, sandbags on top of that, expecting it crest right at the top of the levee," said Jeff Moore with the Hannibal, Mo., fire department.

While some towns are working against the clock to stave off the floodwaters, many Iowans are beginning to cleanup.

The floods have already caused more than $1.5 billion in damage. About 25,000 people in Cedar Rapids were forced from their homes, 19 buildings at the University of Iowa were flooded and water treatment plants in several cities were knocked out.

Many families have lost everything. One woman tried for two days to save her mother's house.

"Finally, we said we got let it go. We can't keep fighting," flood victim Cindy Mendez said, "it's up, we gave up. Mother Nature wins!"

In Cedar Rapids, the Iowa National Guard troops are going door to door to check on homes.

Meanwhile, America's bread basket is soaked and hundreds of acres of crops have been destroyed.

The Financial Times reports expensive nitrogen fertilizer, which is very important for plant growth, was washed out of the fields by rains.

"Those acres are not going to be harvested this year, just because it's getting too late to re-plant anything," Iowa farmer Jerry Morgan said.

President Bush is scheduled to visit Iowa Thursday for a firsthand look at the devastation.

"We're in constant contact with people on the ground, to help make sure that we save lives," Bush said.

An even bigger blow is that the Red Cross now says its disaster funds are gone.

The relief organization will now have to take out loans to provide help to the flood victims.

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