Impacts of the 1993 Flood on the Mississippi River in Illinois

by Nani G. Bhowmik, (F.ASCE), Illinois State Water Survey, Champaign, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Hydraulic Engineering


The 1993 flood has now been recognized as one of the greatest floods on the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers. Its geographical extent included portions of Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Wisconsin, and Minnesota. The three season flood brought an untold amount of destruction to the floodplains of the Mississippi River in Illinois where the river borders the western boundary of the state for about 800 kilometers (Km). The floods on the Mississippi River also impacted the lower 129 Km of the Illinois River within the Alton Pool. Most of the flooding on the lower Illinois River was caused by the backwaters of the Mississippi River where at least two major levees failed. Nineteen other major levees in Illinois along the Mississippi River also failed during the flood. As a result of the flood many people were dislocated, many homes were damaged, public water-supply sources or treatment facilities were disrupted, and important bridges, roads, and highways were closed. Commercial navigation and recreational traffic came to a complete halt. The flood was also associated with some beneficial and detrimental impacts on the environment.

Subject Headings: Floods | Rivers and streams | Highway bridges | Seasonal variations | High-rise buildings | Domain boundary | Backwater | Damage (structural) | Mississippi River | Illinois | United States | Mississippi | Missouri River | Iowa | Missouri | Wisconsin

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