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Ill. drinking water supplier deals with low river

Published: Friday, Nov. 30, 2012 2:24 p.m. CDT

EAST ST. LOUIS (AP) — The utility that supplies drinking water to more than 250,000 residents in southwestern Illinois is taking emergency measures due to the low level of the Mississippi River.

The Belleville News-Democrat (http://bit.ly/Uw7gBt ) reports that officials with Illinois American Water say the measures are needed so that the water supply doesn't dry up for communities in Madison and St. Clair counties.

Spokeswoman Karen Cotton says Illinois American Water is investing about $400,000 at the East St. Louis water treatment plant. She says that will allow access to water at a much deeper level of the Mississippi River than the utility's usual intakes can reach.

Cotton says company officials believe the move will keep water flowing to customers even if the drought-stricken Mississippi River drops to record-setting low water levels.

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