Vice President Mike Pence will be traveling to Nebraska on Tuesday to tour areas devastated by record-breaking flooding. It is expected to continue throughout the week.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders revealed on Twitter Monday night that Pence will visit Nebraska at President Donald Trump’s request, to “survey the damage from the terrible flooding that’s impacted much of the Midwest.”
At least four people, three in Nebraska and one in Iowa, have died in the flooding.
Cities across the Midwest are expected to experience more rising water this week, according to CNN meteorologist Michael Guy. Rivers will continue to crest this week and next, with cities including Omaha heavily impacted by cresting, Guy said. A crest is the highest point of a flood wave.
The “bomb cyclone” caused the rivers to rise last week as it moved over the central U.S. with hurricane-like winds and blizzard conditions. That snow and melting ice ended up in rivers and streams, causing flooding and damage after the storm was over.
There are more than 8 million people in 14 states from Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico which are under a flood warning, Guy said.
Three states, Nebraska, Iowa and Wisconsin, have all declared a state of emergency.
“Many residents and communities across our state have been responding to flooding that has impacted homes, businesses, and cities and towns across Wisconsin,” Gov. Tony Evers said. “The warm temperatures and rain the last few days have caused much of the heavy snowpack and ice to melt resulting in flooding, ice jams, and river sand creeks to rise.”
Seventy-four cities, 65 counties and four tribal areas have issued emergency declarations in Nebraska. Flood records have been broken in 17 places across the state and rivers will likely break more cresting records this week, according to the Nebraska Emergency Management Agency (NEMA).
Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts called the flooding the “most widespread disaster we have had in our state’s history.”
NEMA Assistant Director Bryan Tuma said the Red Cross is so far operating nine shelters, which are housing more than 470 individuals. Twenty-nine counties had mandatory or voluntary evacuations, 18 of which have now allowed their residents to return.