Spring Flood Risk in Southeast MN Has Risen Significantly
La Crosse, WI (KROC-AM News) - The National Weather Service has significantly upgraded the risk for flooding in southeastern Minnesota since the region's initial flood outlook was released two weeks ago.
The risk for Spring flooding is now rated as above to well above normal for much of the Mississippi River and its tributaries in southeastern Minnesota northeast Iowa, and southwest Wisconsin. The updated report shows a better than 50-percent risk of major flooding along the Mississippi from St. Paul into Iowa, while the risk is put at better than 50-percent for minor flooding along the Zumbro, Root, and Whitewater Rivers.
The heavy snow that fell during the blizzard that hit two weeks ago and the forecast calling for another significant snow event this weekend contributed to the change in the flood outlook. Forecasters also pointed to the frozen ground, the amount of ice in the rivers, and the saturated soils from the rain that dominated the weather picture last fall. The National Weather Service notes a gradual melting of the snow and less than predicted precipitation in coming weeks could slightly lower the risk, while a rapid warm-up and a higher amount of precipitation could significantly raise the potential for serious flooding.