MURPHYSBORO, IL (KFVS) - The Jackson County Sheriff's Office reports the Big Muddy forecast for the gauge at Murphysboro has decreased in spite of recent rainfall.
It is expected to crest on Thursday evening, May 4 at 2 feet below the record crest of 40.5 feet.
County officials, in coordination with the Illinois Emergency Management Agency, have been in regular contact with local levee commissioners and representatives from The Village of DeSoto, City of Grand Tower, City of Murphysboro, Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the National Weather Service.
According to the sheriff's office, the Big Muddy River is closed to recreational boat traffic.
Access to the Big Muddy and Mississippi levees is restricted to levee commission personnel only.
Commission patrols will begin on the Big Muddy Levee on Thursday evening to monitor conditions and will continue until river levels fall below flood stages.
County officials remind drivers that even as the flood waters recede, many roads will stay under water and closed. They ask that you plan your travels accordingly and do not drive around barricades and through flooded roads.
Sandbag facility opened in Murphysboro
The City of Murphysboro, along with Jackson County, opened a facility for those living along the Big Muddy River who need sand bags for private property.
The facility was at the former Curwood Plant on North 19th Street where sand and sand bags were provided. Residents filled and transported their own bags.
State Representative Terri Bryant has donated 5 dump truck loads of sand toward this operation.
Officials from the Jackson County Sheriff's Office and the Jackson County Emergency Management Agency met on Monday, May 1 with officials from Grand Tower and the levee districts in Jackson County to assess the flooding situation along the Big Muddy and Mississippi Rivers in western Jackson County.
Residents are asked to avoid flooded roads if possible, and to never attempt to drive through flooded roadways.
Furthermore, Murphysboro Emergency Management officials are working with County Emergency Management Officials to make sure city infrastructure is protected, and working with the American Red Cross to help provide emergency shelter for those residents who are relocated due to the predicted high water.
Anyone with concerns regarding the upcoming flooding can contact the Jackson County Emergency Management, Murphysboro Police Department or the American Red Cross at the contact numbers listed below.
Residents may also access updated flooding information at the City of Murphysboro's website by clicking here and looking under the heading "Big Muddy River Flooding."
Jackson County Emergency Management: 618-684-3137
Murphysboro Emergency Management: 618-687-2023
Murphysboro Police Department: 618-684-2121
American Red Cross: 314-516-2800