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5/20/2011 - Mississippi River crests above 58 feet, affecting TN, MS and LA

Officials are working to mitigate flood damage from the Mississippi River.

Southern residents recently witnessed something that hasn't happened since 1937 - the Mississippi River cresting above 58 feet, setting a new record-high water level.

According to statistics gathered by Reuters from the National Weather Service, North America's largest river reached a level of 58.48 feet in Natchez, Mississippi, passing the previous record by .44 inches. Those high water levels are expected to reach New Orleans by May 21.

Hundreds of businesses and thousands of homes throughout the Midwest and South have been affected by this flooding. Speaking to Reuters, Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal said 3 million acres of farm and wetlands have either flooded or were at risk as of May 11.

With the flood threatening and hurricane season starting June 1, state and federal officials are urging residents with flood insurance to make preparations and those without to purchase insurance. While some auto insurance policies may cover some flood damage to vehicles, there is typically no coverage for flooding in standard homeowners, renters or commercial property insurance policies. Most homeowners and business owners also fail to recognize that most property is at risk for floods. Flood insurance will help these homeowners and business owners financially recover.

To provide assistance to all Selective flood insurance customers in the affected areas, Selective is currently airing radio announcements in those areas with information on reaching us for help. If you are a Selective flood insurance customer who is impacted by the Mississippi River flooding, please call us toll-free now at 877-348-0552.

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