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Officials: Potential For Serious Flooding This Spring

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By Esme Murphy, WCCO-TV

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO/AP) — Officials say there’s a potential for serious flooding in the Twin Cities area and across Minnesota this spring.

“Every river in the state of Minnesota is at risk this spring,” said Dan Luna with the National Weather Service. “And that’s something we don’t normally see.”

An updated forecast released Thursday predicts widespread flooding. And the National Weather Service says rivers in some areas could top their 2009 and 2010 crest levels.

The Red, Minnesota and Upper Mississippi rivers are the main concerns, along with the St. Croix River. Many southeastern cities still cleaning up from flooding last fall could also be affected.

“If we have a rapid snow melt similar to last year, look out,” said Luna. “If we get significant snowfall, and I’m talking about a foot or more, in the next couple months and if that snow is heavy and wet, look out.”

Kris Eide, the state’s emergency management director, says people need to take the threat seriously.

“Families should be preparing their emergency with communication information about how to get in touch with each other if there is some kind of evacuation recommendation. It means inventorying things in your home,” said Eide.

She also recommends that homeowners consider buying flood insurance before the snowmelt and spring rains. Flood damage is not covered under a standard homeowner’s policy, and there’s a 30-day waiting period before a flood policy goes into effect.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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