US: Midwestern downpours keep residents out of homes

Strong Midwestern downpours may force residents to wait even longer to return to homes they evacuated due to fears of flooding, emergency management officials said Thursday. Parts of northeast Missouri and west-central Illinois received up to an inch (2.54 centimeters) of rain overnight following strong downpours the night before. Weather systems rolling across Iowa were expected to produce more rain Thursday and Friday, the National Weather Service said. The rain was bringing new river crests and fresh anxiety. As calls for sandbagging slow in one community, they pop up in another. In Canton, Missouri, the Mississippi River had fallen to nearly 8 meters Thursday, but officials were monitoring weather reports in Iowa and said they could not yet lift a voluntary evacuation in parts of town. "A major rainfall could bring our levels back up just as quickly as it did before when it rose 10 feet in a week," said Canton emergency management director Jeff McReynolds.