NEW: Several roads still closed due to floodwaters in Trempealea - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

NEW: Several roads still closed due to floodwaters in Trempealeau, Buffalo counties

Flooding between Cochrane and Alma in Buffalo County. (NWS-Photo used with permission of Liz Schwab) Flooding between Cochrane and Alma in Buffalo County. (NWS-Photo used with permission of Liz Schwab)
Flooding between Cochrane and Alma in Buffalo County. (NWS-Photo used with permission of Liz Schwab) Flooding between Cochrane and Alma in Buffalo County. (NWS-Photo used with permission of Liz Schwab)
Photo courtesy of Kay Miller Photo courtesy of Kay Miller

A number of roads remain closed following Thursday mornings heavy rains in both Trempealeau and Buffalo counties.

Trempealeau County Public Information Officer Pat Malone said as of Friday afternoon, five roads were closed in the county: Espeseth Road, Knutson Valley Road, River Valley Road, and Swede Valley Road. Only one lane of County Road Y is open.

Buffalo County reports several roads closed. They include Highway 88, County Roads EE, U, Z, T, B, and NN.  Blank Hill Road is also closed. 

LEARN MORE: Interactive Map of Road Closures in Buffalo County

Trempealeau County joins Buffalo County in declaring a state of emergency after heavy rains flood parts of the area.

According to the Wisconsin Emergency Operations Center in Madison, the City of Independence is having a voluntary evacuation of businesses and residents on Osseo Road due to flooding. The road is in downtown Independence and runs adjacent to Bugle Lake and the Trempealeau River. 

Highway 93 is closed due to flooding. 

Residents in Strum in Trempealeau County are reporting basement flooding from the several inches of rain that fell overnight in the county.

Buffalo County remains under a state of emergency. Six families were flooded out of their homes in the Mondovi and Gilmanton areas. The town of Cream also saw extensive flooding from the storms. Highway 88 in that county is still closed. 

The Buffalo County Sheriff's Office said that Highway 37 from Alma to Highway 88 south of Mondovi is closed until further notice due to floodwaters from the Buffalo River. 

Several county roads were washed out and remain closed. 

The water came up fast according to witnesses. 

"Right away this morning when we drove through there was no water, this was all getting flooded, then a couple hours later it started coming over the road.  At about 8:00, 9:00 this morning I came back, drove through, and the water was above our bridge rails.  Then everything started falling through, all the bridges started to collapse, and the roads we're washing out," said Matt Kolve from Trempealeau County.  "Probably just wait till the water goes down, no big deal."

"When I woke up this morning the water was literally right to the edge of the mailbox, and it went from there, right at our house.  You can clearly see what we're up against, thank goodness we're all alright and the house still on the foundation, but a lot of cleanup to do and we thank the good Lord everyone's alright," said Barry Nordstrom from Buffalo County.

Riverland Energy Co-op tells News 18 in Eau Claire there's around 300 homes in the area without power.  They're working on getting it back on Thursday but because so many roads washed out, they said it's unlikely.  They said it's the worst they have seen since 1998.

Health officials urge people to have their wells tested first if they've been submerged by flood waters. 

Due to the flooding, Gundersen Health System has evacuated their clinic in Independence. 

In a statement from Gundersen, Brian Theiler, Gundersen Tri-County Hospitals and Clinics CEO, said patients from Independence are being seen at the Gundersen Whitehall Clinic.

12:30 p.m. UPDATE: Buffalo County authorities recommend people not travel in the county following flooding from heavy rains Thursday.

The county declared a state of emergency after early assessments showed heavy flooding that damaged numerous roads throughout the county.

One report from law enforcement, propane tanks were floating down a creek near Cream. 

Authorities ask that any Buffalo County residents who have flood damage to call 211 to report it.

In Trempealeau County several roads are reported closed. Parts of Highway 93 were flooded and impassable.

Road closures in Eau Claire and Price counties were also reported to the Wisconsin Emergency Operations Center in Madison. 

Heavy rains have closed a number of roads in Trempealeau and Buffalo counties Thursday morning. 

Buffalo County Emergency Management is recommending that people stay off the roads until further notice, as they work on assessing road conditions.

At this time, State Roads 37, 88, and 121 as well as County Roads U, X, and E are closed.

A report to the county said that flooding left a deep hole in Highway 37 east of Alma. 

Highway 88 is closed due to a washed out culvert. It is impassable near Cream.

Highway 121 east of Gilmanton is closed. 

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation said Highway 93 near Chimney Rock in Trempealeau County was reported as impassable as of 8:45 a.m. Another portion of Highway 93 near Strum was reported washed out. Highway 93 between Independence and Eleva is closed as of 9:30 a.m.

Secondary roads in those counties were also damaged by the rain according to authorities.

The National Weather Service had a report that five inches of rain led to flooding between Alma and Cochrane Thursday morning. 6.3 inches of rain was reported near Nelson. 

Some street flooding in Arcadia was reported to the NWS 

If you approach any standing or flowing water on the roads, don't drive through, turn around to be safe. The Buffalo County website will be updated as new information is received.

The public is being asked to keep the telephone calls to law enforcement for emergency response only.   

Minnesota roads are also affected by the rains.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation said that there were reports of mudslides and tree damage near Wabasha and Elba. They also sent out this tweet of Hwy. 61 near Lake City. 

WXOW StormTracker Weather 

Some unofficial rainfall totals from the National Weather Service: 

-5.04 inches - Wabasha

-5.06 inches - near Alma

-6.30 inches - near Nelson

-7.67 inches - near Kellogg

-7.82 inches - Plainview, MN

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