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Thursday night storms cause minor damage & mudslides

Storms in the Winona cause minor damage and severe mudslide.
Published: May. 20, 2022 at 5:43 PM CDT
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WINONA, Minn. (KTTC) – Some heavy rains and strong winds ripped through the Winona area last night, causing minor damage and a pretty serious mudslide.

From 7:00 p.m. until midnight Thursday, the Winona County Sheriff’s Office responded to 13 calls about storm debris blocking the roads.

“Everything from a tree down blocking a roadway, to water across the roadway, to mudslides to an oven in the middle of Highway 61,” Winona County Sheriff Ronald Ganrude said.

The emergency response teams had to work through difficult weather conditions which created some challenges.

“Our response time is a lot slower. Like everyone should, we slow down too,” Sheriff Ganrude said.

One area that was hit particularly hard was Homer, a town two miles outside of Winona. A mudslide came through the town damaging the yards of many houses that sit on the bluffs.

“It took the hillside down all the way up from here about a mile and a half and you can see the damage that happened. Got a lot of debris, a lot of rock. We had a lot of water come down. Underneath my bridge here, no rocks were there and you can see how it’s about six feet deep now,” Homer resident Larry Overhaug said.

The sheriff’s office had to call in reinforcements after a tree and a powerline were taken down by the mudslide.

“We actually called out our SOAR team. It’s a group of volunteers that respond to help out the deputies. They blocked out Homer road for a long time,” Sheriff Ganrude said.

This is not the first time the area has experienced mudslides. Even though the damage is quite severe, residents are prepared for cleanup.

“It is a call that we get quite frequently, just got in that area and typically not as bad as that,” Sheriff Ganrude said.

“Part of nature and just gotta clean it up and move on,” Overhaug said.

Residents along Old Homer Road lost power at 11:00 p.m. Thursday. It was restored at 8:00 a.m. Friday.

The Winona County Emergency Management team said there were no injuries from the storms and that they are working on putting together a damage assessment.

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