Davenport businesses work to stay afloat

Iowa News

DAVENPORT, Iowa (CNN) – Some Iowa business owners who have been dealing with damaging floods are finally getting a bit of a break. Residents are now pumping out water, checking sandbags and assessing the damage.

Jacob Shinn of WSR Construction Services has made his way dozens of times to work on a boat since the levee broke in Davenport, Iowa.

“We have a crew of six people that have been here working two men each shift,” Shinn said. 

People are at the location around the clock to keep the water outside the building from bursting in.

“We’ve created barriers with sandbags and plastic but that only stops so much,” he said. 

Up top, their work has paid off, but the basement is full of water, rising to the top of the basement steps.

Half Nelson restaurant owner Matthew Osborn was ready to open the day the levee breached.

“1993 seemed like the mythic thing that would never happen again,” he said.

After putting $1.5 into his new restaraunt, he salvaged a lot.

“I feel lucky in comparison to a lot of our neighbors who don’t occupy a building like ours,” Osborn said.

His business neighbor Rick Harris was in the same boat.

“There was about four inches of water all over the place,” said Harris.

Pumps now run throughout both restaurants, and furniture is lifted inches off the ground in case of any seepage.

“Last night was the first night I didn’t have to sleep in the restaurant myself,” Osborn said.

Now it’s about the little wins that help them. 

“[It’s] like, ‘Oh, I can see the top of the fire hydrant on that street. I can see the top of the wheel wells, on that car or something like that that means a lot to us.”

With more rain expected this week, many business owners say they are keeping some sandbags in case the water rises any more. 

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.