Douglas County Among Latest To Be Named State Disaster Area Due To Flooding

A flooded corn field along Route 130 near Villa Grove.

A flooded corn field along Route 130 near Villa Grove, earlier in the week..

Andrew Pritchard/SkyDrama.Net

Governor Bruce Rauner named five additional counties state disaster areas Wednesday evening due to flooding --- including Douglas, Morgan, Christian and Clinton Counties in central Illinois.

Alexander County, which borders the Mississippi River, was also added to the disaster area list, joining seven other counties bordering the river --- Calhoun, Jackson, Jersey, Madison, Monroe, Randolph and St. Clair counties.

Douglas and Christian remained under a flood warning Thursday morning, even as floodwaters from the Embarras River began to recede in the Douglas County town of Villa Grove. Illinois Route 130 in Villa Grove was reopened to traffic Wednesday.

Flooding continues in Iroquois County, where flood warnings have been posted along the Iroquois River at Iroquois and the Sugar Creek at Milford.

In Watseka, floodwaters forced as many as 50 people to leave their homes this week.

Fire Chief Dave Mayotte … who helped move residents to a local church … says conditions on the city’s north side are similar to last July’s flood, which displaced about 400 people.

He says many of those staying at the emergency shelter at Trinity Church don’t have power in their homes.

“We’ve had no emergency evacuations or anything like that, we’re just being cold, water’s filling up, around people’s houses, filling their basements, and they have no heat,” said Mayotte. “That’s probably the biggest reason for the evacuation.”

Mayotte says anyone attempting to drive in Watseka now really needs to know their way around to avoid flooded streets.

IDOT reports parts of Illinois Route 24 and Illinois Route 1 remain closed due to flooding in and around Watseka.

Story source: WILL