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After the storm

By Staff | Jul 7, 2013

Several days throughout the month of June, the words “Rain, rain go away, come again another day” rang in the minds of Faribault County residents.

Or, they may have even changed it to “come again after a nice long dry spell.”

Higher than average precipitation in April and May did not help the flash flooding issues when June brought thunderstorms and rain storms crashing through the area.

The average rainfall for the month of June in Faribault County is 4.64 inches. Keep in mind that is for one whole month.

On June 13, the morning after the worst of the storms, an average of 1.52 inches of rain was recorded around the county.

The northeast and southern parts of the county seemed to be hit the worst. One recording in Clark Township, southeast of Wells, shows a whopping 3.80 inches of rain for that storm system.

With the rains came hail and damaging winds.

Wells probably had the worst damage out of all of Faribault County with the June 12 storm. One of the grain bins on the WFS site collapsed, flooding caused damage in people’s homes and the lightning struck several trees, trapping cars under their weight.

As if that wasn’t enough, the storms weren’t finished yet. The rest of the month was littered with thunderstorms filled with more hail and high winds.

According to the Southern Minnesota Weather Authority’s Facebook page, on June 21, “Almost all of Minnesota is under a flash flood watch.”

It didn’t stop there.

On June 23, Blue Earth, Guckeen, Winnebago and Huntley were impacted by a storm that brought hail larger than 3/4 of an inch in size and 60 mph winds.

According to KBEW’s Facebook page, they recorded 1.45 inches of rain from that June 23 storm at the radio station in Blue Earth.

Farms were flooded and some still are leaving standing water for several days, destroying crops.

The mosquitoes are out of control.

But, despite the problems that have come with the storms, the towns are banding together to get things cleaned up.

Wells held a citywide clean up on Saturday, June 22 to help residents dispose of ruined carpets and other items from their basements.

“It took longer than expected,” says Wells’ deputy city clerk, Deb Redman. “They also tried to make a special attempt to come back on Monday to get things picked up for those who didn’t have time to put items out before.”

People helping themselves and their neighbors isn’t the only option either.

The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) has a mission, “to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards,” according to their official website.

FEMA will provide assistance to cities that have been deemed a disaster area. Without being declared a disaster area, FEMA will not dole out funds.

The city of Wells is in the process of assessing the damages caused by the storms. In order to act on the information gathered, the governor of Minnesota will have to officially declare that a major disaster exists.

“This assistance is not intended to restore your damaged property to its condition before the disaster,” states the FEMA?website.

So, residents that are applying for assistance should keep that in mind. The funds will be to help people get back on their feet by covering some essential expenses, not to remodel their basements.

As of July 3, Faribault County was declared a disaster area by Governor Mark Dayton. The dates included in the declaration are June 20 through June 26 to cover the multiple storms that hit the area.