IL residents in Grand Tower, East Cape Girardeau, McClure urged to evacuate

Update on evacuation and flooding concerns in Grand Tower
Published: Jan. 1, 2016 at 9:05 PM CST|Updated: Jan. 2, 2016 at 12:24 AM CST
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GRAND TOWER, IL (KFVS) - Emergency personnel are urging residents of certain communities around the Heartland to evacuate in order to stay safe while floodwaters rise.

Alexander County, IL

Residents of East Cape Girardeau and McClure are being urged to evacuate to higher ground.

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency and the Illinois State Police are supporting Alexander County officials' efforts to encourage residents in low-lying areas to evacuate.

Thursday evening, officials advised residents in Fayeville, Miller City, Willard, Olive Branch, Hodges Park, Unity and Sandusky to leave the area because of a high potential for water to overtop the Len Small levee. That expected overtopping began today.

On Thursday, the National Weather Service increased previous river level projections that made it likely area levees would be overtopped Friday.

Officers from the Alexander County Sheriff's Department and Illinois State Police have been going door-to-door in the affected areas to urge residents to leave the area before floodwaters could make it more difficult to reach safe ground.

Officials are asking anyone that leaves their homes to contact one of three numbers to advise them of the address and contact information for the home owners. Those numbers are:

  • Chalen Tatum - Alexander County Board Chairman at (618) 521-8102; Tim Brown - Alexander
  • County Sheriff at (618) 203-6057; or EMA Operations at the Alexander County Highway Department at (618) 776-5431.

Officials will compile a list of impacted residents so they know residents made it safely out of the area and set up extra patrols for the areas affected.

The American Red Cross has opened shelters at the Osage Centre in Cape Girardeau, MO (1625 North Kingshighway, Cape Girardeau, MO) and at Shawnee Community College (8364 Shawnee College Road, Ullin, IL) to assist residents in the impacted areas.

Grand Tower, IL

The Army Corps of Engineers has upgraded recommendations to evacuate the Grand Tower, IL area to an emergency status.

Because of increased concern by the US Army Corps of Engineers for the stability of a section of the Big Muddy River Levee, recommendations to evacuate the Grand Tower area are being upgraded.

Transportation to the Red Cross Shelter in Murphysboro will be provided for those in need.

Buses will be leaving from Grand Tower Civic Center as needed.

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