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Northeast Receives Needed Rain

July 18, 2012, 6:00 PM by Erich Schaffhauser

Northeast Receives Needed Rain
WEBSTER, SD -

People in Webster went to bed Tuesday needing rain and woke up Wednesday to about five inches of it.

You could even see some puddles sitting around northeast South Dakota Wednesday, that's something people there hadn't seen for weeks.

"So this rain definitely was something we really needed. I mean it was crucial that we got it," Jeremiah Knapp said.

Knapp works for Aldrich Farms in the Webster area. Because of the recent dry conditions and the heat, his bosses anticipate a cut in yield this year regardless. But they'll take it considering what they could have seen had the rain not come.

"With the high temperatures forecasted, within another four days, we would have seen major damage to the crops," Knapp said.

Farmers were just some of those to benefit. Day County Emergency Manager Wes Williams was happy to see a decreased fire danger thanks to the rain.

He says farm equipment has sparked fires recently that spread because of the dry conditions.

"The rain last night is probably going to help alleviate a lot of those problems. We still want to be very vigilant," Williams said. "It's only going to take a few hot days and low humidity; we could be back to at least the dry material being very burnable."

But at least on Wednesday, farmers in the area were enjoying the conditions that will allow corn and beans to continue growing, a real turn around from just a day ago.

"They were getting pretty dry; they were burning up pretty bad," Knapp said.

We spoke with a variety of farmers in the northeast to see how they expect their corn crop to turn out now that it's gotten some rain. We heard estimates ranging from a ten to 40 percent cut in yield depending on their location.

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