Record rains cause overflow of water areas

By Megan Hopps

SUN PRESS Newspapers

 

The cities of Champlin and Dayton, as well as much of the southern portion of the state experienced heavy rainfalls for six straight days, from June 14 to 19. All the rain lead to flooding and even broken wether records.

Mississippi Point Park has reached a crest of 12 feet as of Monday June 23. City staff has closed the park due to flooding of the parking lot and picnic areas. (Sun staff photo by Megan Hopps)

Mississippi Point Park has reached a crest of 12 feet as of Monday June 23. City staff has closed the park due to flooding of the parking lot and picnic areas. (Sun staff photo by Megan Hopps)

According to the National Weather Service Twin Cities, the Minneapolis area had a total precipitation amount of 25.05 inches for the year as of 1 p.m. June 19. This is the highest amount of precipitation ever to fall for year at this time. The second highest was 21.00 inches in 2001.

“A record rainfall in a calendar day for the month of June of 3.95 inches was also set on June 19. This breaks the old record of 3.84 inches set on June 29, 1877,” according to the National Weather Service’s website.

The National Weather Service issued a flash flood warning for the southern third of the state Thursday, June 19, after a fourth straight day of heavy rainfall. Excessive runoff from heavy rainfall caused flooding of small creeks and streams.

Furthermore, the National Weather Service also issued a hazardous weather outlook for the Twin Cities area on June 19.

According to the National Weather Service Twin Cities the Crystal Airport, nearest area to Champlin and Dayton, received 4.33 inches of rain from June 14 to 19.

 

TERMININOLOGY

What is a flash flood warning?

A flash flood warning is issued when a flash flood is imminent or occurring in the warned are. A flash flood is a sudden, violent flood after a heavy rain. Flash floods can develop within hours or minutes of heavy rain. Be aware of flood hazards. Floods can roll boulders, tear down trees, destroy buildings, bridges, power lines and a multitude of other structures.

What to do when a warning is issued? 

Stay near a television or radio to get updates on current conditions. Prepare a family emergency kit including food, water, medications, tools, batteries, flashlights, clothes, personal hygiene items, blankets, sleeping bags and pillows. Contact family members and let them know of your plans and make sure they have an emergency plan in place as well. Keep children and pets indoors. Make sure to have cash and keep your gas tank full in case an evacuation is issued. Make sure you have a battery-powered radio nearby (with extra batteries).

What to do if an evacuation is issued?

If an evacuation is issued in your area, evacuate to higher ground immediately. Turn off all utilities in the home including water and electric. Lock the windows and doors of the home before leaving. Tune into a news station of the car radio and pack the emergency kit and blankets. Plan a route to get to higher ground. Be sure to follow recommended evacuation routes and remember favorite shortcuts may already be blocked by flooded waters.

 

Safety reminders

The Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office has urged residents to use safety precautions because of the widespread flooding. Rivers and streams overflowed their banks, which contain debris, and are fast-moving and make concealed items hazardous.

The HSCO also recommends people avoid recreational use of lake, rivers and other bodies of water in Hennepin County until the water recedes to safe levels. Everyone should avoid playing in flooded streets or near storm sewers.

The Sheriff’s Office has provided some safety tips as well.

• Water rescue — The HSCO works with area fire departments and first responders to prevent and respond to water emergencies. People should not attempt to jump into the water to rescue someone that may be struggling in the water. They are asked to call 911. If possible, throw a floatation device or life jacket to the victim or reach out with an object or rope and pull the victim into safety.

• General safety — Sightseeing is not recommended near bodies of water that have flooded or around fast-moving streams, rivers or waterfalls. Avoid downed power lines.

• Vehicle safety — Six inches of water will reach the bottom of most passenger cars causing loss of control and possible stalling. A foot of water will float many vehicles. Two feet of rushing water can carry away most vehicles. Do not attempt to drive through a flooded road. Do not drive around a barricade. Be especially cautious driving at night.

 

Contact Megan Hopps at megan.hopps@ecm-inc.com

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