Because I want to do everything I can to provide Southern Illinoisans with the resources they need should this flood damage or destroy property, I am providing residents with the following links for up-to-date information concerning the Flood of 2015.  For a list of available Red Cross shelters should you need to evacuate your home or business, click HERE. For a list of the latest road closings throughout Southern Illinois, click HERE.  Most importantly, please DO NOT attempt to drive your car into a high water area.   We have already seen tragedy associated with residents trying to cross roadways in order to get to higher elevations.

If you have any questions, please contact my office in Belleville at (618) 233-8026 or in Carbondale at (618) 457-5787.  The most important thing you can do is pray for our residents, first responders and all those directly impacted by this flooding. 

Thank you.  Mike.

[[{"fid":"592","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

Our next stop was Alexander County where we talked to workers and local officials at the county highway garage in Olive Branch.

[[{"fid":"589","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

I'm continuing our tour of areas in the 12th District most prone to flooding or that have already seen flooding. We're now in Grand Tower, one of the areas that may see some of the worst flooding, talking with residents and officials in that community.

[[{"fid":"590","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

We've had wonderful response and communication from the Army Corps of Engineers. With me addressing questions from residents and officials in Grand Tower is Major General Michael Wehr.

[[{"fid":"591","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

A critical part of getting needed information out to our residents is the local media and I thank them for doing, just that. Reporters from WSIL TV 3 and KFVS TV 12 were here, talking to residents and us about the latest flooding information to pass on to their viewers. Thank you for helping Southern Illinoisans stay informed!

[[{"fid":"579","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

In Alton, dozens of volunteers helped place sandbags ahead of where water is expected to rise. Mayor Brant Walker told me flooding was expected in the basements of the downtown business district but they are preparing for the worst. We also met with officials from FEMA as we continue communication with all the federal, state and local agencies involved to work together in helping our Southern Illinoisans.

[[{"fid":"580","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

As I continue to tour the areas of the District impacted by the flooding, I stopped in Alton to talk with Mayor Brant Walker. Alton is along the Mississippi River in Madison County and is about 15 miles north of St. Louis.

[[{"fid":"581","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

It's been an amazing experience seeing Southern Illinoisans coming out to help their neighbors, even though many have never met. I was touched to see members of the Civic Memorial High School football team in Bethalto come to Alton to help fill sand bags. The Southern Illinois spirit is strong as we help each other! If you get a chance, please share this photo to let others know what these young men did for their community!

[[{"fid":"584","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

Please continue to pray for all those impacted by this severe flooding from our residents to our local businesses and our first responders. The response of Southern Illinoisans to help their neighbors has been overwhelming.

[[{"fid":"586","view_mode":"full","attributes":{"class":"media-element file-full"},"fields":{"format":"full","field_file_image_alt_text[und][0][value]":"","field_file_image_title_text[und][0][value]":""},"type":"media"}]]

If you need to move to a shelter, here's a site that will provide you with that information. Just click on the state of Illinois and look to the right of the screen. It's there where you'll find the current list of shelters in Southern Illinois operated by the Red Cross.  You can access that website, HERE

For the latest information on road closures, flood warnings and watches, you can go to a site maintained by the State of Illinois.  It is updated on a regular basis.  To find out more, click HERE.