Illinois River Faces Flooding In Oklahoma

Monday, June 24th 2019, 8:55 pm
By: Erick Payne

Businesses along the Illinois River are seeing major flooding from storms.

Cherokee County Emergency Management said the river should fall below flood stage by the next day.

The resorts around the areas said apart from a few days this year, the Illinois River has been an outlier compared to the rest of the state when it comes to flooding.

"We just had a perception issue, people perceived since you've got the high water in Muskogee and up around Skiatook that we're flooded also, but we're not," Arrowhead Resort Co-Owner David Spears said.

Despite Oklahoma getting slammed in the last couple of months with devastating flooding in many counties, the Illinois River has been fairly calm.

"It comes up fast, but it goes down fast also," Spears said.

He says they should only have to close floating and rafting until the middle of this week.

"If it happened 24 hours earlier, it would have been really catastrophic as far as dollars go, but it happens, you get used to it when you're dealing with mother nature," Spears said.

Right next to the river, Bill Trammell knows the cards mother nature can deal this area.

Trammel has lived out there for three decades.

"This place got murdered on Memorial weekend because this was the best kept secret it seems in Oklahoma, everywhere else the water was bad, but it was great down here," Trammell said.

"You just kind of deal with it, the people across the state have had it worse than we have, we're just a business, this isn't our home that's getting messed up. It messes with your livelihood but at least it didn't mess with our homes, but yeah it hurts a little bit," Spears said.

Business expect to go back to normal soon.