Seventy-four cities, 65 counties and four tribal areas in Nebraska declared states of emergency Tuesday as swaths of the Midwest battled rivers swollen by days of heavy rains and spring snowmelt.
Three deaths have been blamed on the flooding in Nebraska. As of Tuesday afternoon, more than 7 million people in 14 states live where a flood warning was still in effect, the National Weather Service said.
In Nebraska alone, the farm and ranch losses because of floods could reach $1 billion, the state’s farm bureau said.
Vice President Mike Pence surveyed damage in Nebraska on Tuesday, talking to first responders and visiting a temporary shelter. He promised expedited action on presidential disaster declarations for Nebraska and Iowa.
“We’re going to make sure that federal resources are there for you,” Pence told volunteers at Waterloo, a town of less than 1,000 residents about 20 miles west of Omaha that was virtually cut off by the floodwaters.