Floodwater forces Harrah's Metropolis to close - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Floodwater forces Harrah's Metropolis to close

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METROPOLIS, Ill. -- Floodwater from the Ohio River is impacting many spots in Metropolis including Harrah's Metropolis Casino and Hotel. 

The casino closed for business Monday morning due to rising floodwaters. Public Relations Specialist for Harrah's, Chad Lewis, says he is numb to the situation because it's something that happens at least once a year. 

"It has forced us to close because of the egress issue we have with the emergency doors to the facility," Lewis said. 

The parking lot is covered in floodwater but the facility doesn't have any water damage yet. 

Still, this closure is affecting the casino's bottom line. 

"Unfortunately, by being closed we aren't having the revenue from the tax coming in which impacts the city and tourism, which impacts employees," Lewis said. 

Other parts of Metropolis are also flooded which is forcing road closures in Fort Massac Park. 

Director of Public Safety for Metropolis Harry Masse says parts of the park have already been closed for a week. 

"We still haven't got our spring thaws from up north yet," Masse said. "We are still waiting on all that snow to melt."

Massac Creek is also overflowing and now covers multiple soccer and baseball fields. The Metropolis Sports Park is about a mile away from the river, but the creek runs through the middle of it. 

"You know if the river is high, water from the tributaries and the creeks can't drain into it," Lewis said. "Everything feeds into the Ohio, that's part of our problem."

Since Metropolis businesses like the casino aren't shocked when it floods, employees make the most of it.

"We contact a list of non-profit organizations in the area that may need help restocking their selves, cleaning, painting or whatever we can help with as far as the community goes," Lewis said. 

Lewis says they will continue to monitor river levels to determine when the casino can reopen.

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