July 12, 2008

Stormy Weather is Here — Get Used to It

By Chris Hubbuch, La Crosse Tribune, Wis.

Jul. 12--This summer is shaping up to be one of the stormiest in recent memory but nothing out of the ordinary.

"Certainly it's been one of the most active in recent years," said Seth Binau, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in La Crosse. "But we all have short memories. We as humans tend to live in the now."

Easy to do in a week that's seen two severe storm systems.

La Crosse got 1.44 inches of rain Monday and another 0.87 inches Thursday. Thursday's storm system dumped more than 3 inches on Black River Falls, Wis., and 6.75 on Tomah, Wis.

Several roads, homes and businesses were flooded near Tomah. At the city's wastewater treatment plant, operator Brandy Leis said that several lift stations are running full time, but no problems have occurred.

"It's unusual, but for where we live it's actually pretty normal," Binau said. "In the larger scale, we live in the heart of severe weather country."

This comes after a stormy June, when La Crosse got 7 inches of rain -- 3 inches more than normal. Rains on June 8-9 shattered records in many area towns and sent the Kickapoo River surging over its banks for the second time in 10 months.

There's no sign of the pattern ending any time soon, Binau said. After a dry weekend, La Crosse could be in for another bout of storms next week.

Tuesday through Thursday promises to be "very active, very juicy," Binau said.

The Tomah Journal contributed to this report. Chris Hubbuch can be reached at (608) 791-8218 or [email protected]

Disposal of Yard waste

With storms hitting the area this week, residents have been hauling downed branches and tree limbs to the city's Isle La Plume drop-off site at 2000 Marco Drive in droves, said recycling coordinator Andy Bakalars.

The site accepts brush from one-quarter inch to 8 inches in diameter and shorter than 8 feet in length from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays and Thursdays; 2 to 7 p.m. Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays; from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays; and noon to 4 p.m. Sundays.

Brush larger than those dimensions can be disposed of at the La Crosse County landfill for a fee from 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. weekdays.


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