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NEWS RELEASE

Doug Neville, Director of Communications
CONTACT:
Doug Neville  651-201-7562
douglas.neville@state.mn.us
 
 
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 17, 2011
Updated Forecast Points to Major Spring Flooding
Warm Weather has not Erased Flood Threat, State Officials Continue Statewide Preparations

ST. PAUL — The updated flood forecast from the National Weather Service (NWS) continues to point to the potential for serious flooding in the Twin Cities and across Minnesota.

Officials from the Minnesota Department of Public Safety Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEM) and NWS announced today recent warm weather and melting snow has not erased the spring flood threat. A majority of that water is still in the basin and forecasted cooler weather will keep a majority of that water from flowing into the rivers. Also, more precipitation is expected in the long-range NWS forecast.

“The remaining snowpack contains a lot of moisture and the ground underneath the snowpack is saturated,” said Dan Luna, meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service in Chanhassen.
“The water is just sitting on the ground and not flowing into the system.”

With the potential for serious flooding this spring, HSEM is meeting with state agencies and county emergency managers to ensure all levels of government understand the risk and take the appropriate steps to prepare their communities. “We’re doing more, earlier,” said Kris Eide, director of HSEM. “We are asking communities to look at how their community might be impacted and what their needs might be at various trigger points. Because of the statewide nature of the flood threat, HSEM is using this information to prioritize the pre-staging of assets.”

State officials recommend Minnesota homeowners consider purchasing optional flood insurance before the snowmelt and spring rains. Flood damage is not covered under a standard homeowner's policy. There is a 30 day waiting period before a flood policy goes into effect. Minnesotans who live in flood-prone areas should also make a family plan and assemble an emergency kit before the waters rise.”

For more information on the spring flood forecast for Minnesota go to the National Weather Service website at http://www.crh.noaa.gov/ncrfc/?n=sproutlookcurrent.

For more information about flood insurance and preparing for floods, visit http://www.floodsmart.gov/. For information about filing claims, or to report trouble applying for flood insurance, call the national information line at 1-800-427-4661.

For consumers experiencing problems with an insurance company or to report any fraudulent activity, contact the Minnesota Department of Commerce Consumer Response Team at
800-657-3602 or 651-296-2488 or on the web at http://www.state.mn.us/portal/mn/jsp/home.do?agency=Insurance .

For information about preparing for floods, or any disaster, see http://www.ready.gov/

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445 Minnesota Street, Suite 100 | Saint Paul, Minnesota 55101-5155 | dps.mn.gov