JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. -- Deteriorating conditions in northwest Missouri led Governor Mike Parson to declare a state of emergency on Thursday. The governor also activated the Missouri State Emergency Operations Plan, which allows state agencies to coordinate directly with local jurisdictions.
Upstream reservoir releases impacted by heavy rain and snow melt have led to widespread flooding.
“The rising floodwaters are affecting more Missouri communities and farms, closing more roads and threatening levees, water treatment plants and other critical infrastructure,” Gov. Parson stated in a release.
“We will continue to work closely with our local partners to assess needs and provide resources to help as Missourians continue this flood fight and as we work to assist one another.”
He's also conducting an aerial survey and then meeting with more officials at Rosencrans Air National Guard Base later on Thursday afternoon.
On Wednesday night, Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers rescued several people from homes and three people from a stranded boat in and around Craig, Mo., where a temporary levee failed yesterday. Ongoing sandbagging efforts today include at a water treatment plant in Forest City, Mo., in Holt County. A Red Cross shelter in Mound City, Mo., is currently housing 12 people forced from their homes by flooding. The Department of Health and Senior Services has supplied tetanus shots to Atchison and Holt counties and is working to fulfill a request from Buchanan County today.
Missouri’s State Emergency Operations Center was partially activated on March 15 in response to flooding, and the Department of Public Safety and its State Emergency Management Agency and Missouri State Highway Patrol along with the Missouri Department of Transportation have been devoting additional resources to supporting communities since then.
Governor Parson reminded Missourians to always be careful around flooded areas and understand the risks floodwater poses:
• Standing water can carry infectious diseases and hide hazards, including road damage, glass, and sewage.
• Storm drains can create an extremely dangerous situation for anyone caught in the current.
• Avoid walking through floodwater and keep children from playing in it.
• Never attempt to drive over flooded roads.