Madison County declares disaster, seeks National Guard help

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ALTON, Ill. (AP) – Madison County in southern Illinois has been declared a disaster area by its county board chairman.

In making the announcement, the county is calling for the National Guard to aid in flood-fighting efforts.

In proclaiming a disaster Wednesday, County Board Chairman Kurt Prenzler said the disaster exists “due to record-breaking flooding along the Mississippi River throughout Madison County and the ongoing efforts to contain said flooding.” Emergency management officials say agencies are starting to pre-position equipment near levees and the county has sent its sandbagging machine to Alton.

Prenzler sent a letter to Gov. JB Pritzker requesting the National Guard monitor the 44 miles of levees within the county.

High water has forced some bridges across the Mississippi to close between Illinois and Missouri, causing extensive detours for some motorists.

The Mississippi is expected to crest at 39.3 feet in Alton on June 4, second only to the flooding in 1993.

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