Waiting for the Water in McCook Lake - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Waiting for the Water in McCook Lake

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It has been a long and anxious day for folks who live along McCook Lake.

If the plan to divert floodwaters from the Big Sioux River into McCook Lake works as it should then the water level on the lake could more than 10 feet.

More than 300 homes lie in the potential path of that flood water...some of them are right on the lake.

Ffor all these folks, their lives are now about filling sandbags and waiting for the water.

It was one of those hot and muggy days in McCook Lake.....where a dip in the lake would sound pretty good.

But within a handful of hours, there's probably going to be too much lake to go around.

"We had filled up 127 pallets..each pallet has 35-40 sandbags on it....so we've been moving them." 1st Lieutenant James McDonald is one of more than 100 members of the South Dakota National Guard deployed to this area. Their job is to make sandbags. Right now, they're making them at the rate of about 1,000 an hour. "We're going as fast as we can."

The sandbags being pieced together here don't stay here for long.

People are grabbing them and going to where people need help.

Some like Regan Ummach have homes that should be safe....but want to help those who are in danger. "We know a couple people whose homes are at risk for being flooded so we're just trying to help out as much as we can."

Then there's the homeowners who live right on the lake....most of the time for peace and serenity. But right now, neither is in big supply.

"I got up at about 4:30 to line up some equipment. They started doing the sandbags about 6." Jon Sandage has lived on McCook Lake for about four years.

He's sandbagging as much as he can as fast as he can...but homeowners here have been told McCook Lake could rise more than 10 feet...which would be a problem for Jon....who tells us....he's dealing with all this the best way he knows how. "It's out of my control. Usually you're nervous about something you can control. I'm hoping nothing happens but I know I can't do anything about it either."

Sandbags are being filled in both McCook Lake and Elk Point.

More than 100 members of the South Dakota National Guard are part of that effort tonight; hundreds more are on stand-by should they be needed.


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