The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is closing three locks on the Mississippi River in Iowa and Illinois due to high water.
The corps says Thursday the closures are necessary as the river overtops the lock gates, making them inoperable. The locks to be closed today are Lock 12 in Bellevue and Lock 13 in Fulton, Ill., which are between Dubuque and Davenport, and Lock 16 in Illinois City, Ill., which is below Davenport.
The corps says the Mississippi River is rising swiftly, and additional locks may be closed over the next several weeks — depending on spring rains.
The Mississippi River is forecast to crest next week in Davenport at 19.9 feet. That would be the sixth highest crest on record.
Officials in Clinton are expecting river levels to reach 21 to 22 feet within the next week. The city now has free sand bags available for residents who may be affected by the rising river levels.
Empty sand bags may be picked up at the Water Pollution Control Facility located at 1901 Beaver Channel Parkway. Residents must pick up the empty sand bags; the city will not deliver them. Bags may be picked up between 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Sand for the bags will be available for free in the parking lot next to Clinton Park on Third Avenue South, across from Central Fire Station. Anyone wanting sand bags and sand will have to fill and transport the bags themselves.