NWS says faulty data behind North Raccoon flooding at Perry

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A faulty sensor in a gauge in the North Raccoon River west of Perry indicated the river is at flood stage early Saturday, but the NWS said the data is incorrect. Source: NOAA and USGS


A sensor in the North Raccoon River west of Perry indicated the river is near flood stage early Saturday and led to a warning bulletin issued on statewide public safety radio, but the National Weather Service said the data from Perry is not correct.

“Right now the sensor at that gauge is currently not operating correctly,” a spokesperson in the Johnston offices of the National Weather Service told ThePerryNews.com at 4:15 a.m. Saturday.

“We believe the sensor might be too cold right now,” the spokesperson said. “We had a sheriff go out there and take a look at it and reported there are no flooding issues right now, so we think that’s either associated maybe with ice that either floated by, or it could be just a result of the gauge not working in these frigid temperatures.”

More accurate data lies behind the NWS’ wind chill advisory now in effect for the Perry area until Tuesday at noon. The NWS forecasts wind chills ranging from 15 below zero to 29 below zero across southwest and south-central Iowa.

The cold wind chills will cause frostbite in as little as 30 minutes to exposed skin.Frostbite and hypothermia can occur if precautions are not taken. The NWS recommends people wear hats and gloves if venturing outdoors.

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