Corps: States can help improve flood forecasting

May 23, 2012

The top military officer in charge of managing the Missouri River system says the agency needs help from states to improve its ability to predict water runoff.

Brigadier General John McMahon spoke Wednesday at a meeting in Bismarck, N.D., with representatives of eight Missouri River states. McMahon says the agency is working to collect more data from other federal and state agencies about rainfall and melting snow.

North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple says the information needs to be available quickly to help state officials make flood management decisions. He says Montana had more accurate information about Missouri River runoff — but it wasn't readily available.

Dalrymple says data collection improvements wouldn't have prevented last year's extensive Missouri River flooding. But he says it could have helped limit some damage.