Page last updated at 02:40 GMT, Sunday, 15 June 2008 03:40 UK

Eyewitness: Swamped by Iowa flood

David Howell's footage of the flooding around his home

At least 24,000 people have been forced to leave their homes in Iowa because of floods caused by heavy storms.

One of the areas worst affected is Cedar Rapids city, where nearly 4,000 homes have been evacuated.

David Howell is a video editor living in the city. He sent the BBC mobile phone footage of the flooding near him and here he tells how he has been affected:

We've had heavy rain here now for three weeks. We haven't had more than two or three dry days before we get another downpour.

David Howell
We were warned that there was going to be heavy storms but no one imagined it would be as bad as this.

City officials were really quick in organising everything but the water was just too fast.

Around 20,000 people have been evacuated which is roughly a third of the city.

Luckily, my wife and I live on higher ground so the threat of us having to leave our home has gone.

Our basement, which was flooded, is now beginning to dry out but we still have standing water in our backyard.

At the moment, our biggest problem is having fresh water. The rains flooded the city wells so we are all on water rationing.

We've started to use the water that we're pumping out of our basement to wash the dishes and flush the toilet, but we have roughly a day and a half's drinking water left.

I wanted the rest of the world to know what was happening to us down here which is why I did the video.

Most of the country's food comes from here in the Midwest and this flood has destroyed most of the crops.

As well as affecting us living in Iowa, this flood is going to affect a lot of people in the States.

Thousands forced out by US floods
14 Jun 08 |  Americas
In pictures: Iowa floods
14 Jun 08 |  In Pictures

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