Rescues and evacuations near Shoto Dam in Manitowoc County

MANITOWOC COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) - Crews in Manitowoc County evacuated 20 homes when an ice jam near Shoto Dam caused flooding.

The Manitowoc County Executive signed an emergency declaration. Officials said the trouble zone was the West Twin River at and north of the Shoto Dam.

“It’s probably about five miles of the West Twin River. We’re seeing flooding in the East Twin River, as well in the Mischicot are. It’s not as bad— but probably about five miles of the West Twin between Shoto and Highway 147 is the worst area," says Travis Waack, Manitowoc County Emergency Management Director.

Some people in the area had to be rescued from their homes. The Manitowoc County Highway Department served as a temporary shelter for people to get help from the American Red Cross and Manitowoc County Human Services.

“I was a little concerned about my sister Sandy Madsen’s across the other side of the river," says Don Cisler. "And she told me this morning she had to evacuate and that she has six inches of water in her garage. Her home isn’t much higher than her garage at this point and I’m just hoping that she’s taken enough stuff with her."

All people are urged to avoid the Shoto area. It is unclear when people will be allowed to return to their homes.

The Sheriff's Office, Town of Two Rivers, City of Two Rivers, Francis Creek and Rockwood Fire Departments assisted with the water rescues.

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers has declared a state of emergency due to devastating floods in Northeast Wisconsin and beyond. That allows state agencies and the Wisconsin National Guard to help if needed.