MADAWASKA (AP) – Most of the thick ice on Maine’s rivers has recently thawed, allaying concerns about ice jams contributing to spring flooding.

Even in northern Maine, a large percentage of ice is gone from rivers like the St. John and Aroostook, where ice jams cause frequent headaches.

“Basically all the ice is gone,” said Greg Stewart of the U.S. Geological Survey in Augusta.

There had been a large ice jam on the St. John River in Allagash the last couple of weeks, said Hendricus Lulofs of the National Weather Service in Caribou, but it has since melted.

“There are few rivers left with ice,” Lulofs said.

“We have 1/8had 3/8 brief periods of concern, but they have passed.”

The only rising water problems, he said, were in low-lying areas along riverbanks.

Some parts of the state, including northern Maine, still have below-normal groundwater levels, Stewart said. And with a dry spring, conditions could worsen.

“What we need is a lot of rain, but we don’t need it all at once,” he said.



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