MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz says COVID-19 is not the only emergency the state’s first responders are preparing for, especially with spring flooding season already underway.

On Wednesday, Walz issued an executive order activating the Minnesota National Guard to assist in areas of the state that face a high risk of spring flooding.

Specifically, the Minnesota National Guard will immediately begin assisting the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office and the community of Oslo, Minnesota. They will be monitoring dikes, flood protection systems and support rescue and evacuation operations that may arise.

“While COVID-19 presents an unprecedented challenge for our state, it is not the only emergency our first responders are preparing for,” Walz said. “Our National Guard remains ready to support our communities’ health, safety and public infrastructure.”

Walz says large areas of the state have been under significant threat of flooding during the 2020 spring snowmelt.

“Multiple counties have declared local emergencies and activated emergency operations plans, using local resources to protect the life and safety of people in the affected areas, and to protect property and infrastructure from additional damage,” the governor’s office said in a release.

The executive order goes into effect immediately after filing with the Secretary of State.