Pritzker activates Guard to help prepare for flooding

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – Gov. J.B. Pritzker has activated nearly 60 Illinois National Guard soldiers and ordered additional steps by the state to prepare for projected flooding along the Illinois River and other streams. The National Weather Service forecasts the Illinois River will reach major flood stage Saturday morning at Meredosia, about 50 miles west of Springfield, and continue to rise through the middle of next week. Without additional flood protection, water could flow over several levees and flood roads, threatening Meredosia’s 980 residents. The Illinois Emergency Management Agency has begun sandbagging to help communities along the river, and Pritzker has issued a state disaster proclamation for four counties.