State Emergency Operations Center works to combat winter weather
December 28, 2015
By Vivienne Henning
Due to flood and severe weather warnings throughout Southern and Central Illinois, non-profit organizations and state government are urging residents to take precautions.
The office of Governor Bruce Rauner sent a press release today, detailing the state’s response to local floods and other detrimental weather conditions.
The news release said that the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC) in Springfield went into action this morning to ensure proper personnel and equipment is stationed in the case of serious flooding and other winter weather.
Villa Grove, a city in Central Illinois, has experienced extreme flooding, with a foot or more of water halting traffic on Illinois 130 from Harrison Street to Monroe Street, an equivalent of three blocks.
The SEOC will remain active and determine if areas need resources to assure citizen safety until the weather has stabilized.
The SEOC has been able to provide water pumps and hoses for Calhoun and Schuyler County, and road closure barricades for in the Metro East area in past inclement weather conditions.
Illinois Emergency Management Agency Director James Joseph suggested in the press release that residents avoid travel on Monday if possible. Flooded and icy roadways could make driving hazardous. Joseph said it is best to check road conditions before heading out to drive and travel.
The Illinois Red Cross has also issued warnings about safe travel during severe weather and about potential power outages.
“The combination of high winds and sleet makes travel hazardous and can cause power outages,” said Betsy Pratt, Regional Chief Executive Officer of the American Red Cross Central and Southern Illinois Region, in a press release. “We want everyone to know how to safely ride out these winter conditions and be prepared if there are power outages.”
In Champaign, the Public Works Department has closed South Mattis Avenue between Kenny Avenue and Curtis Road due to flooding.