Despite rain in forecast, Dane County lakes not expected to flood like 1 year ago

Despite rain in forecast, Dane County lakes not expected to flood like 1 year ago
File: August 2018

Dane County officials are monitoring heavy rain in the forecast, but aren’t expecting flooding like one year ago.

A Flash Flood Watch was issued Monday for portions of southern Wisconsin, including Columbia, Dane, Green, Green Lake, Iowa, Lafayette, Marquette, Rock, Sauk, Dodge, Jefferson and Walworth counties. That warning is scheduled to take effect Tuesday morning through Wednesday morning.

In Dane County, officials said flash flooding could be a concern, but extensive lake flooding is not expected. Lake Mendota and Monona are at least a foot and a half lower than they were during last year’s floods.

In addition, Lake Mendota is 21 inches below 100 year flood levels, so there’s a lot of space for rain that does fall this week. A year ago, water was moved at a faster rate through the Tenney Lock and Dam because the lake was 19 inches higher than it is now.

Dane County officials note, however, that low-lying properties along Lake Monona and Lake Waubesa could see some flooding in yards. Also, groundwater levels are high around the county, so basement flooding could become an issue.

In August and September 2018, record-breaking rains caused a state of emergency throughout most of southern Wisconsin. In Dane County alone, residents saw at least $154 million in damages.

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