La Crosse, Prairie du Chien brace as spring flooding spreads
Melting winter snowpack and springtime rains are causing major floods on the Mississippi River in western Wisconsin, with communities facing road closures and neighborhood evacuations as waters rise.
By Frederica Freyberg | Here & Now
April 26, 2023 • Southwest Region
In La Crosse, the river was forecast to crest on April 26 at 16 feet — four feet above flood stage – and above the high water mark set in 1969. The major flooding means at least one Interstate 90 exit could be closed to travel.
Down river in Prairie du Chien, evacuations of homes along Main Street were proceeding. Many streets in the city and one bridge over the Mississippi upstream closed as the water continued to rise.
The river is expected to crest near 24 feet by April 28 – two-and-a-half feet above the 1969 record.
Tens of thousands of sand bags have been filled and placed in Prairie du Chien as residents try to keep flood waters at bay.
The major flooding is the result of record snowpack, followed by rainfall and saturated soil.