FEMA to assess flood damage throughout Wisconsin - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

FEMA to assess flood damage throughout Wisconsin

Posted: Updated:
Tara Johnson Tara Johnson
Tod Pritchard Tod Pritchard
La Crosse County, WI (WXOW) -

The record rainfall totals that fell in the area during the month of September seem minimal next to the heavy flooding at the end of the month.

SEE: Excessive rainfall creates flooding and mudslides

Tara Johnson, Board Chair with the 29th District in La Crosse County said this initial stage in damage assessment includes public structures such as town and county roads, bridges, culverts, and storm drainage systems.

"FEMA is very important to us. The state Emergency Management Services are very important to us and those dollars are very important. Especially in the times that we live in right now," said Johnson.

Local officials in La Crosse County estimate damages to amount to $900,000. With areas in Bangor, West Salem, and Onalaska seeing the worst infrastructural set backs.

One specific location in the City of La Crosse that continuously suffers from severe weather is none other than Bliss Road.

"Our Emergency Management Services with town and village, and city officials go out and look and do a preliminary assessment. They estimate a value for that, pass it on to that state, that what triggers for the state a visit to come," said Johnson.

The Wisconsin Emergency Management Center estimates damages throughout the state to exceed $14 million. 

Tod Pritchard, Public Information Officer with Wisconsin Emergency Management said that total includes debris clearance, protective measures, and damage to infrastructure.

"What they're really going to look at is, they're going to compare what the estimates are from the towns and the counties and look what potentially could qualify for FEMA aid," said Pritchard.

Johnson stressed that without the capacity to be reimbursed by the state or FEMA for natural disasters like this, local governments, businesses, and residents would be searching for money in budgets that are already depleted. 

FEMA AND WEM (Wisconsin Emergency Management) officials met Tuesday at the Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs Headquarters in Madison.

Three different inspection teams will make their way through Adams, Jackson, La Crosse, Crawford, Clark, Richland, Chippewa, Eau Claire, Vernon, and Colombia counties beginning on Wednesday, October 5.

Assessments are projected to be completed and submitted to Governor Scott Walker by Friday.

MORE INFORMATION: Wisconsin Emergency Management

MORE INFORMATION: La Crosse Emergency Management

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