- Associated Press - Friday, February 22, 2019

WICKLIFFE, Ky. (AP) - The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet says a bridge linking Kentucky and Illinois is being closed probably until late next week due to flooding.

The cabinet said in a news release Friday that the closure of the U.S. 51 Ohio River “Cairo” bridge could last longer if the Ohio and Mississippi River valleys get additional rainfall.

About 4,700 vehicles cross the bridge each day, and about one-third is truck traffic.

Travelers will have about an 80-mile detour to go from Wickliffe, Kentucky, to Cairo, Illinois, via the Interstate 24 bridge at Paducah.

The National Weather Service in Paducah said crests among the top five highest on record are forecast for March 2 at Smithland Dam, Paducah and Cairo.

The cabinet said highways are blocked or restricted at more than 60 locations in the region.

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