Hermann overcomes recent flood while staying prepared for next

10 months 1 week 2 days ago January 25, 2016 Jan 25, 2016 Monday, January 25 2016 Monday, January 25, 2016 7:19:00 PM CST in News
By: Krista Gmelich, KOMU 8 Reporter

HERMANN – The city of Hermann just recovered from December floods, but it's ready for the next. While forecasts aren't currently calling for excessive rainfall, the city floods often. 

“We’re a river town, and we have to adapt to what the river throws at us. And we’re very resilient,” said Mark Wallace, Hermann city administrator. “And it’s not really a big deal.”

While Hermann experiences flooding almost annually, one local business owner said December’s flooding was worse than usual.

“In my recollection, this is the worst flood we’ve had, as far as the highest water, since the flood of ’93,” said Kurt Labruyere, general manager at Hermann Ford.

Labruyere said the water eventually rose to about thirty inches in the dealership’s showroom.

But it wasn’t just the height of the water that posed a challenge. The timing of the flood also proved difficult for Labruyere and the rest of Hermann Ford. Since it occurred at year-end, when many deals still needed closure, Labruyere said tthe dealership set up a makeshift office nearby and used a boat to get back and forth.

“The body shop sits above the flood line so we had a hodgepodge of an office set up over there in the break room,” Labruyere said.

But, other than the inconveniences the flooding caused, Labruyere said it didn’t do much damage. He attributed that, in part, to having a plan in place.

“There’s nothing you can do about it ultimately. If it’s going to flood, it’s going to flood. You just kind of make the best of it. Have a plan in place, know what you’re doing, stay safe,” Labruyere said.

According to Wallace, the city has had a plan in place for a while now.

“We have become very familiar with flood stages, what has to be opened, what has to be closed, how to get through town,” Wallace said.

Over the past several decades, Wallace said, the federal government has bought out most of the residences in the flood plain. And new businesses and homes are no longer built in the zone.

As for the few buildings remaining in the plain, regulations exist to minimize the danger potential flooding may cause.

Wallace said homes in the flood plain cannot be rehabbed to more than 50 percent of what the home is worth. Wallace also checks buildings to ensure utilities are placed above the flood plain level and nothing restricts the flow of water.

But it’s not just regulations that keep the town safe from frequent flooding; it’s also the familiarity of businesses and residents with the river, according to Wallace.

“People that live here for most of their lives can look at the predicted river levels and know how the river is going to affect town,” Wallace said.

Although Hermann is now finishing its clean up of town from the December flooding, Labruyere said flooding is never really far from his mind.

“When it's time to get back to going, you just get in, put your head down, get through the dirt and the muck and the mud, and before you know it, it's gone, you're back in business and you kind of forgot that it happned until spring comes,” Labruyere said.

More News

Grid
List
CAMDEN COUNTY - One man was airlifted to the hospital Friday after his vehicle overturned. According to the Missouri... More >>
6 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 9:22:34 PM CST in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) - Authorities are investigating after tools and equipment were stolen from a Kansas City woodworking shop where... More >>
7 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 8:54:00 PM CST in News
KIRKSVILLE - The Kirksville Arts Center broke out in flames Friday evening. According to an email from the Kirksville... More >>
8 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 7:42:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - A film about the life of a Missouri artist and politician was shown for free on Saturday. ... More >>
10 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 6:09:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Stephen Webber has been elected as the new Chair of the Missouri Democratic Party on Saturday. ... More >>
12 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 4:12:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - People came to celebrate Kwanzaa early this year at the Progressive Missionary Baptist on Saturday. The African-American... More >>
12 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 4:05:00 PM CST in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — A Missouri woman faces 12 years in federal prison for leading a fraud scheme. The U.S.... More >>
12 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 3:29:38 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA – Over 40 local authors showed off their work and networked with other writers at the Local Authors Open... More >>
13 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 2:55:00 PM CST in News
COLUMBIA - Around 10 a.m. Saturday, a man driving his car northbound near Highway 63 and Stadium flipped over. No... More >>
16 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 11:38:33 AM CST in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers have struggled to find a way to pay for repairs along thousands of miles... More >>
17 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 10:59:00 AM CST in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Missouri is seeing a startling decline in methamphetamine lab seizures, but it isn't because users are... More >>
17 hours ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 10:50:00 AM CST in News
COLUMBIA - The Women's Symphony League kicked off the annual Holiday Home Tour, which is its biggest fundraiser of the... More >>
1 day ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 4:12:00 AM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY- The Jefferson City Fire Department responded to reports of smoke coming from a building in the 200 block... More >>
1 day ago December 03, 2016 Dec 3, 2016 Saturday, December 03 2016 Saturday, December 03, 2016 3:57:00 AM CST in Top Stories
COLUMBIA - Following the election of Donald Trump, some students gathered for what they called a "positivity event". KOMU sent... More >>
1 day ago December 02, 2016 Dec 2, 2016 Friday, December 02 2016 Friday, December 02, 2016 7:05:00 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri lawmakers are proposing bills that would make attacking a law enforcement officer a hate crime.... More >>
1 day ago December 02, 2016 Dec 2, 2016 Friday, December 02 2016 Friday, December 02, 2016 4:51:13 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Lawmakers are proposing bills that would make Missouri a right-to-work state. The Springfield News-Leader... More >>
1 day ago December 02, 2016 Dec 2, 2016 Friday, December 02 2016 Friday, December 02, 2016 4:46:41 PM CST in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A former Kansas City, Missouri, man has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for his... More >>
1 day ago December 02, 2016 Dec 2, 2016 Friday, December 02 2016 Friday, December 02, 2016 4:23:47 PM CST in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Gov. Nixon and his wife Georganne kicked off the holiday season in the state's capital with Friday's... More >>
1 day ago December 02, 2016 Dec 2, 2016 Friday, December 02 2016 Friday, December 02, 2016 3:36:00 PM CST in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 37°
5am 37°
6am 37°
7am 37°
8am 36°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

4:00a
Paid Program
4:30a
Wild About Animals
5:00a
Huntline TV
4:00a
Paid Program
4:30a
Paid Program
5:00a
Paid Program

Tonight's Schedule

6:00p
Football Night in America
7:20p
Sunday Night Football
6:00p
Labyrinth
8:00p
Marvel's Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld