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Prior Lake Gets Creative to Deal with Flooding

Updated: 06/28/2014 5:36 PM
Created: 06/28/2014 5:10 PM KSTP.com
By: Josh Rosenthal

If you live in Prior Lake, you better have a boat.

"We got a friend bringing in supplies," said Tom Buckingham as he hopped into his pedal boat. "We also got to get our mail sooner or later here."

Carrie Salonek, the neighborhood postal worker, is driving to the edge of the flooding and then residents are coming to her.

"This has just been a nightmare," she said. "I feel so bad for all these people, seeing them work like crazy every day, and every day I can get to less houses."

Residents are getting creative in other ways, too. Roger Steiner explained that sandbags keep water out, but they can also keep water in. As a result, he attached extra piping to his downspout so any rain water that hits his home won't end up in his yard.

"Between me and Rube Goldberg," he smiled, "you know, they'd be very proud of my contraption."

"These guys have been up literally for 20 hours at a time," said State Representative Tony Albright, who was touring the flooding in his district. He fears this situation will get a lot worse before it gets better.

"You're talking about raw sewage and storm sewage that's going to be coming up and floating into people's lawns. You got people walking around in flip-flops and what not that aren't protected so you got the chiggers, you got the skin issues that are going to happen not only now but later on," he explained. "We're not dealing with this just for the next, you know, couple weeks. I mean this is through the end of the year and probably into next spring too."

In the meantime, the people of Prior Lake are keeping a close eye on mother nature.

As Steiner put it, "we're waiting for the rain storm, so we'll see."

Prior Lake City Manager Frank Boyles also said Saturday that city officials are concerned that with the wind picking up, some waves are being created, and they're hitting the makeshift dykes around the lake. The city is asking boaters to stay off the lakes for the same reason.


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