Wooldridge Homeowners Evacuate as Mo. River Rises

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WOOLDRIDGE - Some Wooldridge residents living in the lower part of town are evacuating their homes Saturday with the threat of flooding.

One couple told us they are taking no chances and will move to higher ground.  Bonita Moore and Roy Wiser say they plan to have most of their belongings moved out by Saturday evening.  Earlier this week, Corps Engineers along with Cooper County Emergency Management officials suggested Wooldridge residents move out of their homes.  This month, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers expect the Missouri River to rise somewhere between 27 and 33 feet near Boonville. In Cooper County, flood stage is 21 feet.

"You know, to lose your home...everything you work for, it's real scary.  It's hard," Moore said.  The couple doesn't think they will be able to move back to their home if the Missouri River floods inside it.

For now, Bonita Moore and Roy Wiser plan to live in a tent outside a friend's home on the higher end of Wooldridge. The couple doesn't know where they will live after potential flood waters in town recede.

Cooper County officials are monitoring Mo.River levels near the Wooldridge community and parts of Boonville where flooding typically occurs. Cooper County Emergency Management Director Tom White says Mother Nature could change current flooding predictions, which are set for the next 48 hours.

"Mother Nature has her own way of doing things, and she doesn't care about government agencies, municipalities and what they say," White said.  Cooper County Emergency Management has already requested assistance from the Army National Guard.

Starting Monday, crews, including local prisoners, will help Wooldridge town officials repair the levee outside town.  With high river levels expected to linger for 60 to 90 days, White says some of the levees protecting mid-Missouri communities might not hold.