Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton issued an executive order Wednesday afternoon authorizing the National Guard to assist with the flood damage in Duluth.
The executive order states: “The Adjunct General of Minnesota order to state active duty on or about June 20, 2012, in service of the State, such personnel and equipment of the military forces of the State as required and for such period of time as necessary to provide assistance and emergency relief services.”
Duluth Mayor Don Ness declared a state of emergency and requested assistance on Wednesday morning, citing “significant damage, debris and popped manholes.” Dayton issued the order just hours after he promised Ness that the state would provide all possible support to the city. Dayton also requested that anyone traveling in the Duluth area follow the request of local authorities and stay off affected roads so emergency crews can complete their work, the Associated Press reported.
According to KAAL-TV in Austin, Minnesota, the 7.2 inches of rainfall on Tuesday and Wednesday makes it the wetest two day period in Duluth history, breaking the 6.7 inch record that was set on July 20-21,1909.
As of Thursday morning, hundreds of people have been evacuated from their homes by emergency crews. The neighborhood of Fond du Lac has evacuated 80 homes, or 250 people, the highest number of evacuees in one Duluth neighborhood. The town of Carleton has evacuated 170 residents. Carlton County Sheriff Kelly Lake told KAAL-TV that the evacuations are not mandatory.
Dayton is traveling to Duluth on Thursday morning to further discuss how the state can help, according to the AP.