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Workers try to keep floodwaters from swamping I-44

By Bill Raack, KWMU

Valley Park, MO – The Missouri Department of Transportation continues to pack sandbags along a segment of Interstate 44 near Valley Park tonight.

They're hoping to keep the encroaching Meramec River from covering the east and westbound lanes as it rises tonight and tomorrow. But the head of the Missouri Highway Patrol, Colonel James Keathley, says they may not be able to keep the river at bay.

"We're doing everything and MODOT is doing everything that they can do to hold the water back but with what we know about the elevations there and what we know about the predicted flood crests, it appears that the Interstate will be covered there, Keathly said."

He said that when I-44 is closed at Valley Park due to flooding -- possibly late tonight or tomorrow -- it will remain closed for probably 12 to 24 hours.

The Meramec is expected to crest at 43 feet sometime on Saturday, which would be a new record in Valley Park.

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