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Worst flooding in history of Nebraska, damage surpasses 1.3 billion

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A state of emergency is in effect in Nebraska after massive floods triggered by rapid snowmelt, ice-covered rivers and heavy rain dumped by major late-winter storm. More heavy rain is expected in the region by the end of the week.

The financial impact could be more than $1.3 billion, Nebraska Governor Pete Ricketts said. That includes $449 million in damage to roads, levees and other infrastructure, $440 million in crop losses, and $400 million in cattle losses.

Gov. Ricketts estimated that more than 2 000 homes and 340 businesses were damaged or destroyed, totaling at least $85 million. 

"I don't think there's ever been a disaster this widespread in Nebraska," Ricketts said.

By Sunday morning, March 24, the rain is expected to spread into the lower to mid-Mississippi Valley exacerbating flood problems across the region.

NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey.

Featured image credit: Gov. Pete Ricketts

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