Freeborn County commissioners declare state of emergency

Published 12:48 pm Thursday, September 22, 2016

The Freeborn County Board of Commissioners declared a state of emergency Thursday after heavy rainfall overnight.

The disaster declaration made during an emergency meeting allows the county to ask the state of Minnesota for public infrastructure funds for storm cleanup.

“We’re saying we’ve become overwhelmed with what’s going on,” said Freeborn County Emergency Management Director Rich Hall, noting he expects flooding to get worse locally as floodwaters flow south.

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Freeborn County roads 27,118,101 and 61 were closed due to flooding Thursday afternoon.

Hall said he expects water levels to fall Friday.

The Freeborn County Sheriff’s Office is distributing free flood cleanup kits at the Salvation Army, 302 Court St.

“We’re trying to arrange distribution locations in Alden and Hollandale, and as soon as we have something set up, I’ll let you know,” Sheriff Kurt Freitag said today in a Facebook post.

Rain totals collected at the Albert Lea wastewater treatment plant totaled 4.6 inches from 8 a.m. Wednesday through 8 a.m. today, though reports of as much as 7 inches have been received from Freeborn County officials.

The National Weather Service has issued a flood warning, which remains in effect until 4:45 a.m. Friday for Albert Lea and the surrounding areas.

Albert Lea, Wells, Blooming Prairie, New Richland, Clarks Grove, Ellendale, Minnesota Alden, Glenville, Geneva and Emmons are expected to continue to experience flooding.




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About Sam Wilmes

Sam Wilmes covers crime, courts and government for the Albert Lea Tribune.

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