ST. LOUIS (KMOV.com) – Heavy rains over the weekend have caused flooding in parts of the News 4’s viewing area.
Rising Meramec River
Sunday night, MoDOT closed Route 141 at Interstate 44 in Valley Park due to the rising waters of the Meramec River. The roadway is expected to be closed a majority of the week. An alternate route for drivers who take Route 141 is Interstate 270 and drivers who take Interstate 44 should use Interstate 70.
Early Tuesday morning, MoDOT closed Interstate 44 from Interstate 270 in South County through Gray Summit. MoDOT officials said Route 100 would become the new Interstate 44 during the closure. Both directions of the interstate were reopened Thursday afternoon.
Wednesday, MoDOT crews closed the southbound lanes of Interstate 55 from Butler Hill to Route 141 due to the flooding. The lanes reopened early Thursday morning.
In addition to the road closure, the flooding forced residents in Valley Park to evacuate. Mayor Michael Pennise said the city issued a mandatory evacuation order beginning Monday at 8 a.m. On Tuesday, the National Guard was stationed at both entrances to the town.
In Eureka, water was seen flooded over the high school's sports areas, including the baseball and softballs fields. Practice and games were moved so the teams can finish their season.
First responders were going door-to-door in a mobile home park in Cedar Hill encouraging residents to evacuate overnight into Monday morning.
Fire officials said the water from the Big River is snaking its way through the neighborhood.
The Cedar Hill assistant fire chief said the river is higher than he saw in 1993. He also said he is worried the river will not crest for hours.
West Alton officials issued a voluntary evacuation notice Tuesday evening. The Rivers Pointe Fire Protections District said it was "strongly recommended" that residents put evacuations plans into place.
Volunteers in several communities assisted with sandbagging efforts throughout the weekend.
More volunteers are needed in Eureka Monday, according to the police department. Volunteers are asked to bring gloves and shovels and report to the Eureka Elk's Lodge at 19 West First Street.
The St. Louis County Police Department is also looking for volunteers to help sandbag their West County precinct at 232 Vance Road in Valley Park. Volunteers are asked to bring shovels and gloves.
State of Emergency
Crews from the State Emergency Management Agency, State Highway Patrol, Missouri National Guard and the state's Task Force 1 Rescue Unit were deployed on land, water and in the sky to save lives and protect property.
Emergency crews respond to rising waters
Saturday night, a couple and their grandson were rescued from their vehicle in Wentzville. Officials said the group attempted to drive through water on the road when their vehicle got stuck. All three were checked by medical crews and reportedly had no injuries.
Sunday evening, the body of an elderly man was found in the flood waters in Jefferson County. Clifford Brandt, 79, reportedly went to take photos of the flood waters when he was swept away. His body was later found along Highway BB and Mimi Mountain Road.
Red Cross & United Way Helping Residents
The American Red Cross of Eastern Missouri has opened a shelter at the Christ the Savior Church in Perry County after the sheriff’s department asked the residents of Lithium, Missouri to evacuate due to the flooding.
The Red Cross also has a shelter open at the TriCounty Senior Center in Pacific, First Baptist Church in Anderson and the Branson United Methodist Church in Branson.
The United Way's 2-1-1 Helpline is open for residents impacted the heavy rains and floods. The helpline is staffed 24/7 to help those impacted to find resources and services in their area. For more details, residents should 2-1-1 or visit 211helps.org.
Several schools in the area have been forced to close because of the flooding.
Wednesday and Thursday over 40 schools were closed as the floodwaters continued rising.
Click here for a list of schools closed.
Throughout Missouri, several roads were forced to close due to the flooding.
The rising water levels and standing water forced area roads to close, including Route 141 in St. Louis County, over a 20-mile stretch of Interstate 44 and several routes throughout various counties.
Wednesday, MoDOT officials closed the southbound lanes of Interstate 55. The lanes reopened early Thursday morning.
Click here for an updated list of road closures.
Residents in the Public Water Supply District No. 2 and Hoene Springs in Jefferson County are under a mandatory boil water advisory until further notice.
Monday afternoon, Missouri American Water asked customers in south St. Louis County to conserve water for the next few days.
Resources for Residents Impacted by Flooding
Several area animal shelters are helping displaced pets free of charge. Click here for more details.
U-Haul is offering 30 days of free storage to flood victims at two area locations.
The Missouri Department of Health is coordinating with St. Louis County to give free tetanus shots to people exposed to the water, including sandbaggers. Anyone needing a tetanus shot could contact the St. Louis County Department of Health at 314-615-0600.
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