Federal officials say most Iowa levees probably will survive the next flood, but a review of  inspection reports over the past four years found a substantial number in unacceptable condition, according to a story published by the nonprofit group IowaWatch.org.


The report by IowaWatch, the Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism,  is an analysis of the Army Corps of Engineers' database of the condition of the state's levees. The database shows eight earthen walls designed to hold back floodwaters in Greater Des Moines that have been listed by the Corps as "minimally acceptable." 


You can click on a map here and zoom into see exactly which metro area levees are in this category


That category can mean anything from minor deficiencies to more serious ones, such as animals burrowing large holes in levee walls and embankment instability. One levee in Van Meter has been designated as unacceptable.


The Corps of Engineers does not manage the majority of Iowa's levees, which scored a overall D- in the American Society of Civil Engineers' 2013 national report card. However, the Corps does monitor 77 levees, only four of which scored acceptable.