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Walker tours flooded area of North Freedom as homeowners assess damage

NORTH FREEDOM (WKOW) — The Baraboo River rose significantly overnight Thursday. So much so that it sent water crashing through the sandbag barrier and into Howard Tarnowski’s basement. Luckily he and his wife evacuated before the water got too high. But when they arrived to inspect the house Friday morning, he says it was as bad as he expected.

“I don’t know if it’s a total loss, but the house foundation has suffered damage. The foundation wall caved in. I don’t know the damage until we get down there,” Tarnowski said.

Earlier Friday, Sauk County Emergency Management officials updated Governor Scott Walker as he got a firsthand look at the damage in North Freedom, assessing the losses inflicted by the flooding.

He spoke with residents, checking on how they’re managing through such a difficult time.

Walker said their safety is his number one priority.

“First and foremost safety. People are safe, but they’re still monitoring the water still going up gradually. Wanna make sure people are safe. Then it’s about recovery. Working with the municipal officials here and the clerk, and then the county. Because we’ve done a statewide declaration, we’ll be working with county emergency management folks all across the state,” Walker said.

Walker said that in many different parts of this region, the water is higher and quicker than it was 10 years ago. With water still rising, it’s important to stay at a safe distance and not go through standing water.

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