Gov. Walz, state, federal officials address state’s spring flood preparations

(ABC 6 News) – As areas of Minnesota prepare for the impact of spring flooding, Governor Tim Walz hosted a briefing Thursday with state and federal partners to provide information about the state’s current spring flood outlook and statewide preparations.

Governor Walz was joined by the Twin Cities National Weather Service Meteorologist in Charge Dan Hawblitzel, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Deputy Commander Lt. Col. Rob Wilkins, Homeland Security and Emergency Management Interim Director Kevin Reed, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources Floodplain Manager Ceil Strauss, and Minnesota Department of Commerce Deputy Commissioner Julia Dreier.

Cities throughout Minnesota have been preparing for floods as the weather warms. The city of St. Paul took a procedural step on April 4 by declaring a state of emergency in preparation for spring flooding. This allows the city to move resources more quickly in case the Mississippi River floods.

Wednesday, Senator Amy Klobuchar stopped by Winona to make sure that the city is prepared for however high the water along the Mississippi River rises.

“They have reserved sandbags at the airport ready to go and they have a plan in place and that’s what I think is really important: Minnesotans are prepared,” Sen. Klobuchar added.

RELATED: Sen. Amy Klobuchar says flooding is likely as waters are expected to rise in Winona

Officials are also closely watching other rivers, like the St. Croix River in Stillwater, as they take steps to prevent damage to residents and infrastructure from flooding.

Watch the briefing below.

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