ISP Urges Caution As Flooding Continues

The Flood of 2019 is impacting several areas in southern Illinois.

Illinois State Police trooper Tracy Lillard says five counties will be impacted directly as the Mississippi River is forecast to crest over the next couple of days.

"Those counties are the following: Monroe in District 11; Randolph County in District 13; Jackson County in District 13; Union County in District 22 as well as Alexander County in District 22."
 
This is officially the third worst flood in Chester history. This year's flood may stay at the number 3 spot, since it's forecast to crest at 45.7 feet, just shy of the 45.99 feet recorded on January 2nd, 2016.

The all-time record flood of 1993 crested at 49.74 feet.

Trooper Lillard warns drivers not to maneuver around the barriers blocking a flooded road.
 
"Please stay out of the flooded areas, stay off of the levees, do not drive through flooded waters and again please follow your respective district page as well as IEMA and watch the National Weather Service."
 
Officials say a mere 6 inches of fast-moving floodwater can knock over an adult. It takes just 12 inches of rushing water to carry away most cars and just 2 feet of rushing water can carry away SUVs and trucks.

Some of the roads closed in southern Illinois due to flooding are Old Route 3 at Gale in Alexander County, as well as Route 3 near the Jackson-Randolph County line and near Ellis Grove at Nine Mile Creek in Randolph County.

Local leaders urge people not to go on a sightseeing trip to see all the flooding, since it's hard enough with road closings to get residents to their homes in some cases.

Governor JB Pritzker says those in flood ravaged communities should be prepared to evacuate as more rain is expected and suggests checking on neighbors to make sure they are okay.

State climate experts say Illinois had the third wettest May on record and it was the sixth-consecutive month with above-average rainfall.

The Illinois State Climatologist Office says preliminary average statewide precipitation during May was 8.4 inches, nearly 4 inches above the long-term average. The office says nearly the entire state had above-average precipitation for the month.

Chicago had its wettest May on record.