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Delaware River Ice Jam Prompts Flood Warning

Posted: Updated:
David N. April David N. April
TRENTON, N.J. -

An ice jam on the Delaware River has prompted the National Weather Service to issue a Flood Warning for counties in Pennsylvania and New Jersey on either side of the river.

The Flood Watch is in effect until 4 a.m. Thursday for southeastern Bucks County and south central Mercer County.

A Flash Flood Watch is also posted for Bucks, Burlington, Mercer and Philadelphia counties through late Wednesday night.

CHECK: Latest Weather Warnings, Watches, Advisories

The ice jam was reported at 11 a.m. on the Delaware River about one mile south of the Route 1 Bridge. Water levels have risen about 7 feet since last night.

"This has resulted in a few miles of near bank full conditions north of the ice jam," the weather service says. "When this ice jam breaks, there may be enough water behind the jam to cause flash flooding downstream."

In Mercer County, flooding is occurring at Route 29 and Market Street. Flooding was also reported at the lower state house parking lot adjacent to the river.

In addition, chunks of ice are rising up and over the fencing adjacent to the river in some areas.

In lower Bucks County, River Road is closed between Black Road in Lower Makefield Township and East Trenton Avenue/Calhoun Street in Morrisville Borough due to flooding.

Precautionary evacuations are possible.

At 2:15 p.m., the stage was reported to be 19.6 feet, just shy of flood stage, which is 20 feet. Minor flooding and a rise above flood stage late this afternoon are forecast with a continued rise to near 20.5 feet this evening.

At that level, officials say Route 32 South at East College Avenue in Yardley Borough begins to flood.

Temperatures are expected to remain below freezing, so the ice jam may not break until Thursday morning.

SLIDESHOW: Temperatures, Wind Chills And Gusts

Navigation and infrastructure, such as docks, could be affected by the release, the weather service says.

A Flood Warning means that flooding is imminent or has been reported. Do not drive your vehicle into areas where the water covers the roadway. The water depth may be too great to allow your car to cross safely. Move to higher ground.

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