Minneapolis/ Weather & Environment
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Published on June 19, 2024
Minneapolis Residents on Alert for Severe Thunderstorms and Flood Risks as NWS Issues WarningsSource: Unsplash/Nicole Geri

Minneapolis and surrounding areas are bracing for a series of thunderstorms and potential flooding, with the National Weather Service (NWS) issuing both a hazardous weather outlook and flood warnings for multiple rivers in the region. The latest forecasts from the NWS Twin Cities/Chanhassen MN indicate a week filled with thunderstorms, heavy rains, and rising water levels which could pose significant risks to communities.

NWS forecasts for Minneapolis on Juneteenth mentioned a mostly cloudy day with a high near 73, but looming showers and potential thunderstorms could make that tranquility short-lived as the night progresses, with a northeast wind around 5 mph; periods of thunderstorms are expected Thursday through Saturday, some of which could be severe and carry the risk of flash flooding. Recent heavy rain has already primed local rivers, at the Crow and Minnesota, for flooding as waters continue to rise.

Concern extends into the coming days with a considerable chance of precipitation ranging from 50% to 90% and possible thunderstorms likely to exacerbate current conditions; the NWS flood statement highlights rivers at risk of breaching their banks, impacting local roadways and communities, such as the Cottonwood River at New Ulm, the South Fork Crow River at Delano, and the Crow River at Rockford, where a mix of minor and moderate flooding issues are unfolding.

With river levels likely to reach moderate or major flood stage in some locations and substantial rainfall expected to worsen the situation, residents are advised to be vigilant, especially as the Minnesota River at Savage is anticipated to see rising waters beginning Wednesday evening, leading to minor flooding with potential for more significant impacts; "Motorists should not attempt to drive around barricades or drive cars through flooded areas," warns the flood warning from NWS.

With the ongoing weather threats, city officials and emergency response teams are likely in high gear, while residents should stay informed through local news and official weather updates; forecasts are subject to change as the week unfolds and residents are encouraged to heed any evacuation orders or safety warnings issued.