East Dubuque business, home owners monitoring river as it hits major flood stage

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EAST DUBUQUE, Illinois (KCRG-TV9) -- As the Mississippi River continues to rise, business and home owners in East Dubuque are either surrounded by water or preparing to be.

The Mississippi River is close to flooding the Midtown Marina in East Dubuque, Illinois on Tuesday, April 2, 2019. (Charlie Grant, KCRG-TV9)

Water is just feet away from Midtown Marina, owned by Jeremy McDowell. On Tuesday, the river sat at about 21.5 feet, with predictions of hitting 22.5 feet on Friday. McDowell said that will be really close to flooding his business.

He said, "22.6 (feet) is when it gets right to the edge of the restaurant. About 23 (feet) and we’ll actually have water on the floor of the restaurant."

McDowell is prepared if the water gets high enough to threaten his building.

“We shrink wrap the doors and then we put two layers of sandbags in front of them and essentially plug the drains and run some squeegees on the floor and we’re able to keep the water out," he explained.

However, some in East Dubuque aren't as fortunate at McDowell. Homes and businesses in the Shore Acre area of town are already surrounded by water. The owners of Splinter Heating said they removed everything they could from their building before the waters got too high.

That area of town is also without running water due to a water main break. Public works director Mark Fluhr says the city can't fix it until the water recedes.

The City of East Dubuque continues to monitor the floodwall and flood pumps. Fluhr says things should be alright as long as it doesn't rain.

"It’s the rainfall that we would get that we have to pump out outside the levy," he said. "It all gathers down in our lower lying areas and that’s the part where if we get in trouble it’s stormwater. It’s not actually the river, the levy is good for up 26 feet.”

He set up some portable water pumps in the low-lying areas of the town in case water begins to pool.

People say it's just a waiting game.

“That’s all we can do is watch it and pray we don’t get any more rain," McDowell said.