With rain in forecast, officials wait to see what river brings

Posted: May. 2, 2013 9:55 am Updated: May. 16, 2013 12:15 pm

Herald-Whig Staff Writer

Emergency management officials are waiting to see if rain forecast for the region over the next several days will create another round of flooding.

"With the original rainfall that fell on April 17, combined with rainfall that is anticipated this week and weekend and the northern snow melt that is starting to come down, we are basically one major rain event from another major flood response," said John Simon, director of the Adams County Emergency Management Agency.

"We could go the rest of the year and not have any problems. We just don't know what's going to be headed our way."

John Hark, director of the Emergency Management Agency in Hannibal, Mo., said the city's floodgates will remain in place into next week because rain is being predicted through Sunday.

In a release, Hark said the Mississippi River is expected to continue falling for the next 48 hours, then begin rising against to a forecasted level of 22.7 feet by next Thursday. He said the floodgates will remain in place until the river falls to 18 feet.

Simon said local agencies already have a head start. He said Quincy city crews have sandbagged around the water treatment plant, and levee districts in West-Central Illinois have increased the height of levees

"We're watching what the river is doing," he said. We're paying particularly close attention to it. We're still in communication with levee district officials, and they don't have any unmet needs at this point.

"So it's giving us a little bit of a breather, but we know we could be back in it pretty quick."