Record Winter Snowfall Causes Snowmelt Flooding in Parts of Northern & Central MN
Spring has arrived and things are starting to warm up, but as the snow begins to melt, it’s creating some problems in parts of northern and central Minnesota.
According to the National Weather Service, Brainerd has seen record snowfall totals, and they estimate this year’s snowpacks held between 4-6 inches of water. Some of the rivers and lakes in the area are taking on water than they can’t handle, including the Mississippi, which is flowing at nearly five times its normal volume. This not only creates hazards for residents in low-lying areas, but also puts financial strain on cities and counties to fix infrastructure damaged by the excess water.
One lifetime resident of Brainerd said this is the highest she’s seen the water in quite some time.
“I had been talking about it with my husband and my son about how I haven’t seen the [Mississippi] this high since high school,” noted Melissa Lewis. “It was interesting to see that the blockade was up, so I figured I’d swing by and just take a peek.”
The city of Brainerd issued a press release Monday informing residents of the closure of several roads and trails, including East River Road between College Drive/Kiwanis Park and Jenny Street, multi-use trails adjacent to Boom Lake and Rotary Park, and Evergreen Landing Park next to the Evergreen Cemetery.
Now, flooding may only get worse with the incoming storm system. The NOAA and National Weather Service in Duluth is hopeful this storm will be the last snowfall event this time of year, but weather is unpredictable. That is why city officials are still urging residence to use caution when traveling on roads or trails near rivers and lakes until waters have receded to a safer level.
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