Weather Forecast


‘Normal’ flooding forecast for Upper Minnesota River communities

MONTEVIDEO — While the Red River Valley is being put on alert for the potential of severe flooding, a normal flood risk remains forecast for the Upper Minnesota River Valley.

There is a 50 percent chance of minor flooding in Montevideo. This represents a historically normal risk level for this time of year, according to the National Weather Service’s Advanced Hydrologic Prediction Service.

The probability for major flooding is 5 percent.

The hydrologic prediction service forecasts a 25 percent probability for reaching minor flood stage downstream in Granite Falls.

A normal flood risk means the city of Montevideo will likely see water reach the 16-foot flood level, but that should not cause any serious disruptions in the community, said City Manager Steve Jones.

The city has greatly reduced the potential for flood damage by removing property in the floodplain and bolstering flood defenses. The city is currently working to complete a three-phase upgrade to its entire levee system.

The city manager and Montevideo Economic Development Director Angie Steinbach testified on Wednesday at the State Capitol on bills that would provide funding toward the final phase of the city’s levee project. Two separate bills remain alive in committees, said Jones. One would provide $33.5 million and the other $35 million toward the levee project.

The National Weather Service projects that flood risk along the Upper Minnesota River will begin April 1, with the greater risk starting April 15 and continuing into early May.

Property owners who are considering flood insurance should do now, as there is a 30-day waiting period before policies are in effect.

Also, the National Weather Service advises that now is the time to begin preparing for the potential for flooding by moving property and items within a home above the levels where flooding might occur.

Tom Cherveny

Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.

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