March 18, 1982 – CBS World News Roundup – Gordon Skene Sound Collection –
March 18, 1982 – News for this day was about rain – a lot of it. Torrential rains were creating havoc in Fort Wayne Indiana and torrential rains battering the west coast were forcing Shuttle Columbia to switch landing sites from California to White Sands New Mexico. A lot of water everywhere.
In Fort Wayne, After the record amounts of snowfall in the winter of 1981-1982 there was no question that a spring flood was probable. As early as midFebruary, NWS bulletins warned of the increasing flood potential. Local officials planned how Fort Wayne would deal with the floods. Some people felt that the city was prepared for a flood they knew was coming. The question was when it would occur and how bad it would be.
The St. Marys River was the first to crest, and the Nebraska Neighborhood in the westernpart of Fort Wayne became the first battleground. During the night of March 13th the river rose quickly. Water backed up into Fairfield Ditch and Junk Ditch. As water
spilled over the lowest dykes, sandbags were hastily laid, but the dikes gave way or were overtopped and water surged into the surrounding areas. Emergency teams call for rescue boats and more than 3,000 people were forced from their homes by the morning of
March 14th. On March 17th, the Maumee River threatened to top the dike and flood thousands of homes and businesses. Fingers were crossed and sandbags were being filled.
Meanwhile, on the west coast: More rain fell on the California desert overnight, complicating plans for the third mission of the space shuttle Columbia and threatening a possible delay in the launching, now scheduled within the next few days. Meanwhile, space agency officials could only adopt a wait-and-see attitude. They expressed confidence that the desert runways would be ready by Monday, the target date, but weighed the possibility of shifting the emergency landing site to another desert, at White Sands, N.M. for March 29th. That would require moving some of the shuttle ground service equipment this weekend from Edwards to White Sands, a distance of about 800 miles.
And that’s some of what went on, this March 18, 1982 as reported by The CBS World News Roundup and hourly newscasts.
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