Minneapolis, Minnesota

Historical Floods

Floods are natural disasters that could happen anywhere around the world during occasions of heavy rains with rising rivers and lake levels beyond the planet’s surface. This happened most often in Minnesota and its neighborhood.

In twin cities, several rain events have caused a lot of destruction and severe water damage for decades. These events involve mega rains that caused flooding all around the cities with its suburban areas.

1997 Red River and Minnesota River Flooding of Western Minnesota

In March and early April 1997, the Twin Cities received an all-time 33.6 inches of snow. The prosperity of late-season snow was historical in many spring floods that had happened before. In late March, the temperature shift resulted in rapid snowmelt with the consequent waters running into the Red River and Minnesota River. The flooding came in early April when rainfall, recorded at 1 to 3 inches, fell, resulting in an increase in levels of those already swollen rivers. The flooding was very heavy and changed over 23,000 families, as listed by The National Weather Services

Spring Flooding of 1965

The floods were caused by snowmelt. In the spring of 1965, the weather was cold and snowy but was followed by hot weather and widespread rainfall. Notably, the month of March was not only the snowiest March on record but also recorded an astonishing 51.7 inches of snow levels. However, these levels had dropped to 27 inches by April, and in two weeks, there was little snow. Over 2 inches of rainfall was recorded over this period. This, in return, caused massive water damage and flooding along Rivers, St Croix, Minnesota, and Mississippi.

The Twin Cities Superstorm, 1987

The downpour on the late night of July 23, 1987, marks the most important rainfall event in the history of Twin Cities. In just 6 hours, Twin Cities International Airport measured a 10- inches rainfall leading to massive flooding in the southern and western parts of the cities. The rain is believed to have been a by-product of the interaction between the south and east warm, moist atmosphere, and the cooler, drier air of the north and west. The claim is further supported by the intense thunderstorms and the torrential downpour which has been experienced two days before this fateful day. Severe flash flooding was experienced on the evening of July 23 as most major roads became swamped, and rivers burst their banks. This saw motorist hurriedly abandon their cars for higher ground as water levels rose past car rooftops. Roads were closed, bridges washed out, lives were lost, homes destroyed, and properties of significant value ruined.

The Great Flash Flood of 1867

Notably, this is the most extraordinary rain event ever recorded in the Twin Cities. The hot season rainfalls occurred in mid-July of 1867 across the western part of central Minnesota. On the evening of July 17th, 1867, a torrential downpour measuring 30 inches of rainfall was recorded. The event recorded the following damages, four deaths, bridges were washed away, with an estimated 25-40 million logs sailed away.

2007 Southeastern Minnesota Flash Flooding

The floods occurred from the 18th to August 29th, 2007, in southern Minnesota after a torrential downpour reaching levels of 17inches. Warm temperatures resulted in training thunderstorms, and moisture from tropical storm Erin moved northwards supported the production of heavy rainfalls recorded at a staggering 15.10 inches. It had been estimated that the damage cost was $179 million.