Riverboat pilots and barge companies will probably have to exercise a little patience over the next few days. Today and Friday, the Corps of Engineers is preparing to close two locks on the flooding Mississippi River.
Spokesman, Allen Marshall, says the locks at Illinois City (Lock and Dam 16) and New Boston (Lock and Dam 17) will be the first to close this year due to high water. At both locations, he says the water is almost ready to overtop the miter gates, and it's not safe to operate the locks when the water is that high.
Corps employees are accustomed to the river's fluctuations. Flooding has already restricted access to the Mississippi from about 20 boat docks and campgrounds. Click HERE for the status of various locations along the river.
The Rock Island District of the Corps of Engineers oversees the locks and dams from Dubuque to Saverton, Missouri.