Heart River affects Mandan businesses


It only took a couple of days of warm temps to make the river rise, and local businesses are affected by it. 

The aftermath of the Heart River flood west of Mandan left many businesses along the business loop on I94 in shambles. 

“It is definitely going to put us out of business for a couple of weeks,” said Matt Ferderer, Service Manager.

The flood damaged tools and materials at North Dakota Prairie Equipment. It’s a Hyundai construction equipment dealership as well as a service shop. Ferderer says they are in the recovery stage. 

“It came up really quick and we didn’t know how hight it would get. It probably got 3 or 4 feet inside of the shop here,” said Ferderer.

But that shop wasn’t the only one. Traveling along Business Loop I94, several car and trucking businesses were hit in several ways. 

Now, that we are currently in the action stage, water levels are decreasing. Morton County officials along with emergency management continue to monitor it and they say it’s a waiting game.

Morton County officials say the heart river is unpredictable. Unlike the Missouri River which is straight and narrows, the Heart River has curves and turns, making it easy for ice to jam. Now, officials are doing all they can to monitor the water.  

“We have been using code red notification system. We are using that system to notify residents out in the county if there are rising water levels or to be aware. We are also working with the Morton County sheriffs department with the drones. We were able to dispatch one of our deputies to go take a look at if there is a jam,” said Cody Mattson, an Emergency Management Specialist.

The Heart River is the main focus but they are also keeping an eye on the Cannonball River, near Breien. Officials say ice jams are common this time of year. 

As for Ferderer, although his business was hit hard. It’s a minor set back for a major comeback. 
“We are tough, we will bounce back,” said Ferderer.

According to the National Weather Service, the water level on the Heart River is just under 16 feet.
Flood stage is 17 feet. But, the river level could change as temperatures get warmer this week.

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