Ogle, Stark Counties Added to State Disaster Declaration
MARSEILLES–(ENEWSPF)–April 22, 2013. Governor Pat Quinn continued to survey devastation caused by last week’s heavy rains and flooding, yesterday traveling to Marseilles, Ottawa, North Utica and Morris along the Illinois River. Governor Quinn also added Ogle and Stark counties to his state disaster declaration, bringing the number of counties that can now get expanded access to state emergency resources to 44 and allowing the state to pursue federal relief and support. Marseilles has seen some of the worst damage in the state, including evacuation of more than 60 residents at a nursing home, over 200 voluntary home evacuations and the closure of a 700-student elementary school.
“Over the past four days, I’ve seen some of the worst destruction caused by flooding ever but I’ve also seen the incredible strength of our public safety officials and citizens as they fight to save their homes and communities,” Governor Quinn said. “We will get through this, and we will continue to help all of the affected communities recover.”
Since Thursday, Governor Quinn has surveyed damage on the ground and from the air and met with local officials in some of the hardest hit communities, including Elmhurst, Des Plaines, River Forest, Bellwood, Riverside, Moline, Quincy, Bartonville and North Aurora.
In addition to Ogle and Stark counties, the following counties have been declared state disaster areas: Adams, Brown, Bureau, Calhoun, Carroll, Cass, Champaign, Cook, DeKalb, Douglas, DuPage, Fulton, Greene, Grundy, Hancock, Henderson, Henry, Jersey, Jo Daviess, Kane, Kendall, Knox, Lake, LaSalle, Livingston, Marshall, Mason, McDonough, McHenry, Mercer, Morgan, Peoria, Pike, Putnam, Rock Island, Schuyler, Scott, Tazewell, Whiteside, Will, Winnebago and Woodford.
The state disaster declaration makes available a wide variety of state resources that can help affected communities respond and recover from flooding. It came after assessments by emergency officials and the governor, and begins the process of securing federal relief.
As of Sunday, the state has fulfilled more than 50 requests for assistance from counties including:
Department of Transportation
• More than 200 IDOT personnel and 137 trucks and equipment have been deployed to deliver sandbags, plastic, pumps, hoses, trucks and drivers to communities.
• Conducting flyovers of flooded areas for situational awareness.
• Providing guidance to communities on pumping equipment needs.
Department of Corrections
• Inmate crews are assisting with sandbagging efforts in several communities.
• Nearly 440 inmates have worked around the clock to fill more than 60,000 sandbags since Friday.
Department of Natural Resources
• DNR boats and conservation police officers have assisted with home and medical evacuations, river rescues, missing person searches and other flood-related responses.
Illinois Emergency Management Agency
• Provided 40 StarCom radios to the Algonquin Police Department for emergency communications.
• Deployed liaison teams to Quincy and Milan to coordinate response efforts along the Mississippi River.
• Coordinating requests for assistance from affected counties with state resources.
Illinois National Guard
• UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter and two crew members assisted the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers with overflight of the Des Plaines and Little Calumet Rivers to survey integrity of flood control systems and infrastructure.
Illinois State Police
• Continue to assist motorists and local public safety agencies with flood-related issues.
Department of Public Health
• Provided information on tetanus shots to local public health departments, hospitals and medical offices.
• Monitoring situations at nursing homes and long-term care facilities affected by flooding.
Department of Central Management Services
• Procured work gloves for inmate crews assisting with sandbagging.
Governor Quinn activated the State Incident Response Center on Thursday to coordinate the deployment of state personnel and assets to assist local governments in the affected areas. The state’s flood response is coordinated by the Illinois Emergency Management Agency.