Aerial flyover of areas flooded by Mississippi, Ohio Rivers

Many points along both the Mississippi and the Ohio rivers are expected to crest next week. The crest at Cairo is expected to hit 17.5 feet above flood stage late Sunday, and at Paducah 18.5 feet above flood stage Jan. 7.

People along those points and in surrounding areas have prepared for the rising river levels for days. The Army Corp of Engineers deployed personnel to our area to help with the flood fighting efforts, and water has closed several roadways and bridges.

It seems like the areas affected by all this flooding grow every day, and it’s even more noticeable from the air. People preparing for the flood on the ground and those keeping an eye on things safely from the shore say they’re hoping for the best.

Ashley Graham remembers the flood of 2011. "(It was scary) when people were literally leaving their homes in boats," she says.

Since relocating her business to Paducah, she’s had a good glimpse of the rising river through her window. Graham says she feels safer than four years ago.

"They built the floodwalls," she says. "The city has to know what they’re doing."

But, she says she sees the potential destruction neighbors in surrounding areas are trying to protect against. "These guys, they have kids toys. They just had Christmas, and it breaks my heart when you think about it," she says.

Helicopter pilot Scott Aldridge says he’s seeing flooding from above for the first time. "It’s all new to all of us then," he says.

Aldridge had few words for what we were flying over. He was trying to remember what he used to be able to see, and what all the water from above really means for people in the middle of it.

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