Fargo Mayor Dennis Walaker has sounded the all-clear for flood danger in the southern Red River Valley. Walaker made his annual pillgramage to the Red River headwaters in northeastern South Dakota and western Minnesota Thursday to gauge possible spring flooding. The longtime mayor and former city public works director has gained notoriety for making flood predictions that often trump the National Weather Service. Walaker tells The Associated Press there’s nothing that alarms him about this year’s melt and he has never seen the basin south of Fargo in such good shape.
As we move towards spring, the upcoming melt poses a flooding risk where you wouldn’t expect it. Alleys and intersections in Minneapolis could be the trouble spots if there’s a rapid warm up. Fifty-seven inches of snow and ice cover most of the city’s 50,000 storm drains, leaving nowhere for the water to go.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it will begin drawing down water in Lake Traverse near Wheaton, Minn., in preparation for the spring melt in the Red River Valley.
By Minneapolis city law, the winter season is considered Nov. 1 through April 1, meaning the city can’t declare a snow emergency, even if several inches fall on Thursday.
Our average high temperature in the Twin Cities is now 42 degrees, but we’ll be warmer than that both days this weekend.