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Officials watching water levels in Champlin, Anoka in midst of ice jams

Updated: January 14, 2020 05:58 AM

Tuesday morning, parts of the Mississippi River in the north metro began leveling off after an ice jam in Anoka County caused it to rise rapidly.

Chopper 5 captured video of the ice jam in the Coon Rapids area.

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VIDEO: Flooding closes parks, trails in Champlin and Anoka; NWS issues flood warning

The ice jam caused major problems for those living near the river.

While the water level hasn't increased, it also hasn't decreased as quickly as it rose.

From Sunday into Monday, parts of the river rose 8 feet and caught many off guard.

Residents of an apartment complex near the river woke up to find their vehicles stuck in partially frozen water.

Many in the area said the rapid rise of the river wasn't normal.

"I couldn't believe it," Kevin Fitzpatrick said. "Just walking down the street here looked across to the other shore, the Champlin shore, and I thought, 'My goodness that looks high.' Came over there for a closer look and it's truly remarkable."

The Anoka police chief said normally, ice jams break up naturally. He added, at one point, the river was at 13 feet, which is about a foot over flood stage.

As of Tuesday morning, the river was closer to 12.5 feet.

Officials said they plan to keep a close eye on the river's level to determine whether they need to start sandbagging efforts or asking people to leave their homes temporarily.

Officials also cautioned residents to stay off the trails and not venture onto the ice.

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