Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Flood Crest, after Ravaging 3 States, Heads for Illinois

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Flood Crest, after Ravaging 3 States, Heads for Illinois

Article excerpt

* The rising water might cause the casino in Metropolis, where customers already have to traverse a floating ramp, to close.

While the worst is expected to arrive next week, many small towns and villages along the Ohio River in Southern Illinois are already beginning to flood.

The crest of water passing through Louisville, Ky., now will enter Illinois around Tuesday, emergency workers said. The crest will continue down the Ohio and reach Cairo and the Mississippi River a week or so later. The Ohio is already high, 20 feet above flood stage in some towns. "This is pretty extensive flooding," said Justine Dodge, spokeswoman for the Army Corps of Engineers. "The Ohio has reached a level that has not been reached since 1964." Dodge said the Kentucky hamlet of West Point - population: 1,339 - located between the Ohio and Salt rivers, has become an island. "It can only be reached by boat," she said. Casino Threatened Significant flooding has hit the Illinois city of Metropolis. Instead of the usual few yards, gamblers heading toward the Player's Casino in Metropolis must traverse a block-long floating ramp. Kim Lang said the water is encroaching on the land side of the ramp, and if it rises any more, the casino will close. "The water is pretty close," she said. "It's coming up pretty fast." The Corps of Engineers expects the river to rise another foot by Tuesday - more than eight feet above flood stage. Jim Parmely, first mate aboard the Roy E. Claverie river boat, is back on land for a while because much of the Ohio is closed to traffic. But the river followed him ashore. When he got to his mobile home in Metropolis Thursday night, he found the Ohio had moved more than a block into town and was lapping at his yard. "It's completely got our front yard and garage," Parmely said. "It was really a shock." By Friday afternoon the river was beginning to explore the front of the trailer, and Parmely could use the back door only. He moved power and phone lines higher, hoping to preserve them from the water, and was considering whether to disconnect the trailer from its sewage line. …

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