Peoria city crews have action plan to fight rain water backup along Riverfront

By Marshanna Hester

April 22, 2013 Updated Apr 22, 2013 at 10:48 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Tuesday's expected storm is creating a new concern for Peoria city crews.

About 30,000 sandbags are in place to protect businesses on Water Street from the swelling Illinois River.

But when it rains, the water from the top of the hill will be stopped by the sandbag wall.

Interim Public Works Director Jeff Smith says they planned for the river, but not for the rain.

"We've got several pumps all the way from two-inch to six-inch pumps and folks staffing them 24-7 for the duration of the event, so we feel like we can react immediately," Smith said. "We've got a lot of extra sandbags in the stockpile and businesses can use them too. We're pretty confident barring an inch and a half an hour or something like that.

Onlookers are encouraged to be safe near flooding, by not tampering with the sandbag wall and staying out of the water.

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