University of Iowa officials are starting to take stock of the damage the Iowa River has done to the Iowa City campus.
University of Iowa president Sally Mason says Hancher Auditorium took a real hit. "The predictions are that water is likely up to stage level inside Hancher and I think people who have been in Hancher have a pretty good idea of what that means. That’s a significant amount of water," Mason says.
Fifteen other buildings on campus have been flooded and officials estimate there is up to four feet of water inside the University of Iowa Museum of Art. Mason says even though the river has reached its crest, flood levels are expected to remain high for several days. "We have 15 facilities that we know of that are flooded. We have another seven that we’re concerned about. They are at risk of flooding. Although we have made herculean efforts to contain this…We did our best with the first 15, in many cases, but it wasn’t quite enough," Mason says. "Mother Nature took over."
Even though it’s surrounded by water, University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics remains open and is operating at nearly-normal levels. "Obviously, we’re rescheduling appointments that are what we call ‘not critical’ but you know, if you’re a cancer patient and you need your regular treatment…you can still get here," Mason says, "and the hospital is still running at full force."
Nurses are being bused in from Cedar Rapids and flown in from the Quad Cities to fill shifts. More than 1400 doctors and dentists; over 1500 nurses and over 4600 other staffers work at the hospital.