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Frigid temperatures cause ice jam on the Missouri River

We recorded 14 days in a row below freezing this month, with near record temperatures for several days in that period.

The frigid air around Mid-Missouri and upstream of the Missouri River has caused portions of the river to freeze over, and with warmer temperatures and sunshine the last few days, we have started to see ice jams.

An ice jam happens when chunks of ice float down the river due the the stream's current and start to accumulate and create an obstruction in the stream flow.

This week's ice jam started near Glasgow with the effects being felt downstream near Jefferson City, where the river level has dropped below the zero. Ice jams can cause flooding up stream as the water backs up, but with river levels being below normal, flooding is not expected.

River levels at Jefferson City will go back up to about 4 feet by Tuesday. Flood stage in Jefferson City is 23 feet.

Much warmer temperatures will help melt ice on rivers the next several days as we reach near 40 degrees this weekend.

The last time this happened in our area was in the early 1980s.

Cold / Insider Blog / Winter Weather
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Jessica Hafner

Jessica Hafner returned to ABC 17 News as chief meteorologist in 2019 after working here under Sharon Ray from 2014 to 2016.

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