Town Talk: Emergency Management

The City of New Ulm Emergency Management Department has received notification that there is a strong likelihood of significant flooding for this spring. The primary reasons for this concern involve the high river and soil moisture levels that we are currently encountering for this time of year.

The high river and soil moistures levels are not the only factors used to predict flooding; however, both are considered important primary contributors involving flooding events in our region. New Ulm has both the Minnesota River and Cottonwood River flowing within city, so this significantly increases our flooding risk due to river flooding.

Of course, the current river levels are not the only factors that create a flood risk. Other factors include local and upriver Winter Precipitation, Snowpack/Liquid Equivalent, Rate of Snowmelt, Frost Depth and Spring Precipitation. These events are unknown at this time; however, considering the high river levels and soil moisture that we are encountering, we consider the National Weather Service’s advice to prepare for flooding is important.

Following are some recommendations to prepare for flooding:

1. Have an evacuation plan in place. Please consider a safe location that you can stay at that is not prone to flooding. Consider moving important sentimental & valuable property before the event and have a “to-go-bag” ready at a moments notice with personal supplies to include a supply of clothing and medication that will last for at least one week.

2. National Flood Insurance Program: This program is subsidized by the federal government and is meant to provide private property owners an affordable option in protecting their personal property. This can be purchased through FEMA website (www.floodsmart.gov) or through most local licensed insurance agents in the New Ulm Area. Please note that there is a 30 day time period from time of purchase to effective day and the premium needs to be paid in full at the time of purchase.

3. Integrated Public Alert Warning System (IPAWS) is important. Please consider subscribing to Brown County’s NIXLE. Subscription can be made through the Brown County Website at no cost to the public. This will provide warning notifications and may likely prove valuable in a tragic event.

In the event that you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly. My phone number is (507)233-2124, email: nupd.dave.borchert@co.brown.mn.us or stop in at my office (New Ulm PD, 15 South Washington Street, New Ulm).

Thank you.


Editor’s Note: The City of New Ulm presents a weekly column highlighting activities in different departments in the city government. Once a month the city will answer questions from readers. Questions on New Ulm city issues can be sent to comments@ci.new-ulm.mn.us.