ISRB Meets in Bismarck - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

ISRB Meets in Bismarck

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There'll be no designation of 2014 as a flood year on the Souris-Mouse River system - at least for now.

That was the decision of the members of the International Souris River Board meeting in Bismarck today.

Jim Olson reports on what happened at today's annual spring look at the river system.

A remarkable amount of precipitation. That's what hydrologist Allen Schlag of the National Weather Service says would be required to bring the Mouse River into danger of a spring flood for 2014. However, Schlag says there is a significant difference in the status of the river from upstream - north and west of Minot, and downstream of Minot in places like Towner and Westhope.

(Allen Schlag, National Weather Service) "We have probably a normal to even slightly below normal risk above Minot in that Sherwood through Lake Darling and the 4NW Minot gage. However once we get downstream of Minot, that's where the risk seems to increase just a bit, perhaps just a bit above normal."

Schlag and John Fahlman of the Saskatchewan Water Security Agency say the river channel is frozen solid in many areas - something that makes it difficult to predict what any flood-controlling releases might do - if they become necessary before the major thaw. Still, in general, the group heard reports indicating that water volume from runoff this spring should be normal to even a bit below normal from Saskatchewan through Minot and Velva. Schlag says from there on through Westhope, there'll be a higher chance of minor flooding.

(Allen Schlag, National Weather Service) "The weather in ND changes quickly and we can go from this relatively normal precip pattern to one of significantly above normal relatively fast."

The ISRB did not declare this a "one in ten" flood year for now - meaning no flood operations will begin. However, members agreed to meet via conference call in one month to consider the conditions then and see if the determination should change. In Bismarck, Jim Olson, KX News.

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