The Mississippi river south of St Louis is experiencing major flooding following the recent record rainfall in parts of Illinois and Missouri. In fact, the crest in Randolph and Jackson counties may equal or even exceed the record crest we saw in the big flood of 1993.
Rene’ Poshe (Po – shay) with the US Army Corp of engineers St Louis District say the corps is closely watching the levee system and working with local and state authorities to deal with any potential issues. Poshe says this flood developed very rapidly.
The crest is expected hit Randolph and Jackson counties on New Year’s Day, and some levees may be overtopped. This flood is unusual not only that it happened so quickly, but major flooding in December is very unusual… in fact, a major flood like this has not previously occurred in midwinter.
Since the flood of 1993, Poshe says levees have been improved. In fact, after the massive failures of the system around New Orleans during hurricane Katrina in 2005, the corps has seen an increase in funding nationwide for flood control and levee maintenance.
Meanwhile, many farmers and others living behind the levees are evacuating homes, securing livestock, and moving stored grain to local elevators as a precaution against the levees overtopping.