Winnebago County leaders declare Emergency Disaster in response to widespread flooding

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MACHESNEY PARK, Ill. (WIFR) -- An Emergency Disaster has been declared for Winnebago County in response to flooding across the region.

According to Winnebago County Chairman Frank Haney, the heavy rain combined with melting snow has made the river rise to 14.3 feet. It is expected to crest on Tuesday at 14.5 feet, which is record-breaking.

County leaders are assessing the hundreds of homes they say could be damaged from these floodwaters. “Numerous” roads are said to be impassable. Haney said his heart goes out to everyone affected.

Haney said he has asked Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker to assist in a disaster declaration.

Winnebago County Sheriff Gary Caruana is encouraging residents to create a disaster plan for their families in case of a need for evacuation. He is working to establish shelter locations in the county.

For those in need of a place to stay, the Red Cross contact number is: (877) 597-0747.

Sandbagging stations are set up at the following locations:

- Former Machesney Park Mall southwest lot: 8702 N. 2nd St., Machesney Park, Ill.
- Krape Park maintenance building, 1799 Park Blvd., Freeport, Ill.
- New Milford Fire Station: 2177 Will James Rd., New Milford, Ill.
- Old fire station at 1819 South West Ave / IL 26 in Freeport.
- Roscoe Public Works: 5402 Swanson Road, Roscoe, Ill.
- St. Paul’s Missionary Baptist Church at 607 East Stephenson St.