Concerns grow over when Len Small Levee can be repaired

Concerns grow over when Len Small Levee can be repaired

ALEXANDER COUNTY, IL (KFVS) - The Len Small Levee in Alexander County, Ill. will need major repairs but officials are concerned when the work will be able to start.

Levee district president, David Willis, says the barrier is in bad shape.

"[There's] between a two-thirds and a mile breach and it's still washing on the south end," Willis said, Tuesday.

The levee starts in Fayville and runs about 18 miles south along Mississippi River.

When its walls collapsed, Friday, it exposed towns like Olive Branch and Miller City to rising water.

"I'm kind of wondering how were to get it cleaned up and if it's going to happen again," Olive Branch homeowner Angie Henderson said.

Henderson and her husband's home sits on Route 3 and was largely spared from flood waters.

"So far it's just in the yard and garage," Henderson said.

It may be some time before any work can be to ensure residents are safe from river water once again.

By the time the water goes down enough to work, Willis says the temperature will likely be too cold.

"You can't put frozen dirt on a levee because it won't hold," Willis said.

For those who rely on the land in the levee district for farming, the worrying is growing.

"It's a big concern," Willis said. "We may not have a crop down there this year."

County officials say they will receive help from the Army Core of Engineers to repair the levee as soon as it's possible.

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