Gov. Blagojevich declares Knox and Madison counties state disaster areas for flood-related issues


The Governor’s disaster declaration will allow the state to expedite assistance in anticipation of flooding in Madison County and disruptions to the water supply in Knox County. This was caused by the loss of more than half of Galesburg’s water supply coming from Oquawka, which is on the Mississippi River. The state disaster declaration makes available a wide variety of state resources that can help affected communities respond to and recover from storms or flooding.

The State of Illinois has personnel and assets that can be mobilized to help local government officials with disaster recovery, including such things as sandbags, inmate crews to assist with filling sandbags, boats for evacuations and security patrols, road barricades, pumps, trucks and a variety of heavy equipment.

Currently there are approximately 230 inmates sandbagging along the Mississippi with an additional 48 inmates en-route from the Vandalia Correctional Center to the Clayton Work Camp to assist with flood preparations in Quincy. Fifteen additional inmates are temporarily being transferred from the Greene County Work Camp to the Pittsfield Work Camp to assist with an around-the-clock operation to fill sandbags. In addition, inmates at the Jacksonville Correctional Center today began a 24-hours-a-day operation to fill 500,000 sandbags for flood-fighting efforts along the Mississippi River.

The Governor has also activated 1,100 Illinois National Guard troops to assist with sandbagging and other flood preparation efforts.

To date the Governor has declared 19 counties disaster areas, including Adams, Calhoun, Clark, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, Douglas, Hancock, Henderson, Jasper, Jersey, Lake, Lawrence, Mercer, Pike, Rock Island, Winnebago, and now Knox and Madison counties.

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