ST. LOUIS (AP) _Floodwaters are receding in many hard-hit Midwestern communities, but the worst is yet to come on the Mississippi River.
Heavy rain last weekend prompted a sudden rise in rivers in the central U.S. Nine deaths have been blamed on floods and flash floods.
River levels are dropping along the Black River in Missouri and Arkansas, and the Meramec River in suburban St. Louis. Residents of the levee-protected part of Valley Park, Missouri, are to return home Friday.
But problems persist on the Mississippi River. A 14.5-mile (23-kilometer) stretch remains closed at St. Louis. A bridge is closed at Chester, Illinois. And sandbagging volunteers are trying to protect homes in Cape Girardeau, Missouri.
The Mississippi is expected to crest in the next couple of days in St. Louis and to the south.
MoDOT is still assessing other area roadways as the flood waters recede. Although many have reopened, some busy stretches of road remain closed.
Among them are Route 30 or Gravois at the Meramec River and Route 47 from the Missouri River Bridge in Washington to Marthasville.
Also shut down are Route 94 from Augusta to Defiance in St. Charles County. Route 109, south of Interstate 44 remains closed.