Petersburg Goes Toe To Toe With Flood - Flood Blinks

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Petersburg – Faced with one of the worst floods in his towns history Petersburg Mayor John Stiltz huddled with his police chief, fire department and community leaders.  Within hours the town mobilized volunteers to build an 1,800 foot long wall standing four and a half feet high.

The town decided to fight the rapidly rising Sangamon River to protect homes and the downtown business district.  As night fell on January 1st it appears the people of Petersburg have defeated the flood in an effort never before seen in this community.

“No, we’ve never done it before,” Mayor Stiltz told WAND’s Doug Wolfe.  “We didn’t know if it would work.  But we felt confident once we got it going it would work and so far it looks like it is.”

Businesses directly behind the wall, including a Casey’s and a Pizza Hut, remain dry.  “We have zero loss,” the Mayor stated with a smile.

Flood stage on the Sangamon River is 23 feet.  Friday it reached 30.7 feet where it is expected to stay with some minor fluctuations into Sunday.  The river is expected to drop below flood stage on Tuesday.

Illinois Route 123 is closed and is not expected to open to traffic again until Tuesday.  The Illinois Midland Railroad tracks are flooded at 4th Street.

(Pictured: Rail crossing & flood wall at Petersburg.)

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