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U.S. Coast Guard Patrols Flooding Mississippi River

It's a little too cold for boating, fishing, paddling, and rowing on the Mississippi River.

But Michelle O'Neill reports the Coast Guard is working with local, state, and federal agencies to help keep everyone safe during the spring flood.

Coast Guard Petty Officer, Mack Parker, says whether the river is flooding or not, he tells people to "always, always, always:"

  • Wear a life jacket
  • Make a "float plan" (i.e.: Tell someone where you're going and when you'll be back)
  • Never go boating alone
  • And stay far away from locks, dams, wing dams, jetties, and other obstructions in the river.

He has 12 years experience responding to floods, including several hurricanes. And, after a couple of years in the Quad Cities, Parker says it's "refreshing" to see how well police, fire, sheriff's departments, and others in the region support each other.

For example each year during Floatzilla, Parker coordinates more than 30 boats and personnel to promote safety. Employees from many local agencies also train together on the Mississippi River, especially to be ready for search and rescue emergencies.

Credit https://bit.ly/2NOq27Z / Quad Cities National Weather Service
Quad Cities National Weather Service

In the Quad Cities, the Mississippi is forecast to reach a crest of 5.4 feet above flood stage on Sunday afternoon, or 20.4 feet compared to the 15-foot flood stage at Rock Island.

That level would rank as the 8th highest crest. More information is available HERE.

Officially, Michelle's title is WVIK News Editor. She does everything there is to do in the newsroom and whatever may be needed around the radio station.
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