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Waters top levee, swamp central Illinois town

Published: Friday, April 19, 2013 10:00 a.m. CST

LONDON MILLS (AP) — A flood-swollen river in central Illinois has topped a levee and inundated parts of London Mills, prompting authorities to evacuate about half of the small town of about 500 people.

Police chief Scott Keithley says the waters overwhelmed the levee on the Spoon River overnight sending torrents of water into yards and sewers already running out of control because of the heavy rains. He says some homes are half under water.

Keithley says authorities and volunteers have given up filling sandbags in the town, a small community of farm workers.

The water has pushed debris into the town and sent abandoned cars floating.

Flash floods and rivers that have quickly risen to record or near-record levels have inundated communities around the state.

Gov. Pat Quinn has issued a disaster declaration.

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