Walker surveys storm damage in Fond du Lac County
FOND DU LAC CO. (WLUK) -- Gov. Scott Walker's latest stop on his tour of storm damage in Wisconsin is Fond du Lac County.
The governor surveyed the damage in the county Thursday morning where at least six tornadoes touched down this week.
A total of 16 tornadoes have been confirmed to touch down in the state.
State emergency officials say 20 counties have been affected by flooding over the last 10 days.
Walker on Wednesday declared a statewide emergency, directing state agencies and the Wisconsin National Guard to assist local authorities as needed.
Renae Katsma and her husband live in Waupun, they told FOX 11, their backyard has become part of the Rock River.
"Overwhelming, just overwhelming," said Katsma. "It kinda slowly went up because Sunday to Monday we had 4 inches of rain, after that we had 6, then Tuesday we had another like probably 4 to 6."
Katsma said they're having trouble cleaning up the damage because their yard is flooded.
Governor Scott Walker said people should report damage to 211, in hopes of getting federal assistance.
"The more we can collect information the more likely it is we have a chance," said Walker, "It's a high bar, and it’s really based particularly for private property based on the ability for people to inhabit their homes."
Fond du Lac County damage numbers are still being tallied, but Governor Walker said damage in Dane County is well over $100 million.
"For our farmers, who are already facing some challenges is put prices when it comes to dairy and other crops and commodities. We want to make sure we get them all the help and assistance they can get," said Walker. "Right now, get safe, work on recovery and document it. Let us know through local governments as much of that damage as possible."
Walker also reminded folks to stay off flooded areas.
"Don't drive through it, don't let your motorcycles through it and don't let your kids play in the water."
And while clean-up may take some time, some residents are trying to stay positive.
"My husband and dog is okay, so that's all that matters to me and all our neighbors are okay, so it can be cleaned up, it can be replaced," said Katsma.
This week's storms also left a trail of damage in Minnesota where torrential rain washed away an entire hillside near Como Falls, a waterfall on Thompson Creek. Local officials say the picturesque waterfall is gone and damage to the park is severe. Without the falls, authorities are concerned about a handful of nearby houses that could be flooded.