Mudslides, flash floods swamp cities on Minnesota-Wisconsin border

Cities are closed off and roads impassable after Wednesday's storms.

Communities along the Mississippi River in southeast Minnesota and western Wisconsin are surveying the damage after Wednesday's storms brought mudslides, flash floods and high winds.

There are reports that multiple roads are out of commission because of mudslides, groundwater or fallen trees, while residents are dealing with flooded basements and wind damage to homes.

The National Weather Service reported that on the Minnesota side of the Mississippi, Minneiska (just north of Winona) suffered flash flooding and a mudslide that covered parts of U.S. Hwy. 61.

Across the border in Arcadia, Wisconsin, residents had to be evacuated after the Turton Creek burst its banks, with KARE 11 reporting the city's downtown and main through-road, Highway 95, were completely flooded along with some residential areas.

On Thursday, all roads into the city are closed and school is canceled for the day, according to the Trempealeau County Sheriff's Office.

Pictures of the scene in Arcadia were shared on social media.

Up to 6 inches of rain fell in parts of the region Wednesday afternoon and evening, and wind gusts reached up to 60 mph, bringing down trees and causing damage to roofs. Some roads in Dakota County were closed for a time overnight after parts of the southern metro were hit with heavy rain, but most of these have reopened.

Another Wisconsin city near the Minnesota border that was particularly hard hit was Galesville, also in Trempealeau County, with the sheriff's office reporting Thursday morning that 18 highways and streets are closed because of water and tree damage.

Nearby Buffalo County was also damaged, with roads in the southern half of the county said to be impassable due to high water and mudslides, with drivers warned not to attempt to drive over any flooded portion of a road.

More rain on the way

The bad news for these flood-hit communities is that the worst isn't over yet either, with the NWS saying that Friday could bring more heavy rain.

The southeast of Minnesota and western Wisconsin is at a higher risk of getting hit with severe storms, which could "aggravate existing flooding and cause new flash flooding." Damaging wind and large hail could also hit the region.

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