Storm Damage Across the Northland
Flood damage devastates areas of the Northland
Governor Walker has declared a State of Emergency for Ashland, Bayfield, Burnett, Douglas, Iron, Price, Sawyer, and Washburn Counties as a result of flooding that has impacted the region. Overnight, several areas received 8-10 inches of rain causing flash flooding.
Wednesday evening, Gov. Walker is viewing damage with Major General Don Dunbar, Adjutant General and Wisconsin’s Homeland Security Advisor and Wisconsin Emergency Management Administrator, Brian Satula. Below are the latest damage reports:
Ashland County: Receiving reports of homes with sewage backup. There are camper trailers that are surrounded by water at Copper Falls State Park. Officials have been assisting the campers.
Bayfield County: Reports of flooding in basements.
Iron County: Officials report the Saxon Harbor is a total loss. Over 100 boat slips were damaged. There was one confirmed fatality. They were able to assist campers that wanted to leave the Michigan Island.
Sawyer County: Officials report that the Smith Creek is rising. Sandbagging efforts are underway in Hayward.
Numerous roads and highways are damaged and closed. State and county engineers are evaluating bridges and roads.
Major road closures:
- Ashland County: US Highway 2 at Sum Road, US Highway 2 at Denomie Creek, and WIS 13 at Silver Creek and Trout Brook, and WIS 169 at Bad River and Tyler Falls
- Bayfield County: WIS 137 at Whipperfurth Road, US Highway 63 at Twentymile Creek and US Highway 63 in Bibon Swamp
- Iron County: WIS 122 at US Highway 2 and Parker Creek, WIS 169 at Vaughn Creek and US Highway 2
- Washburn County: Portions of WIS 77 and County F west of Hall Road
Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources and WI Department of Health Services have issued a press release reminding residents about possible contaminated wells in the flooded areas and the importance of testing their drinking water.
The National Weather Service assessed storm damage in west central Wisconsin this afternoon after reports of storm damage following strong winds early this morning. Officials reported that it was not a tornado in Pierce County but rather a downburst. They are still assessing the Chippewa Falls area for damage that occurred early this morning.
There is a chance of thunderstorms today. For Wednesday, severe thunderstorms are expected between noon and 6 p.m. for south of I-90. The National Weather Service says the storm could produce large hail, damaging winds and threat of isolated tornadoes.
The State Emergency Operations Center is elevated to Level 3 with Wisconsin Emergency Management, WI National Guard, WI Department of Transportation, WI State Patrol, WI Department of Administration, WI Department of Natural Resources, and WI Department of Health Services. WEM Regional offices are on scene working with county emergency management agencies.