WAYNESVILLE, Mo. (AP) - Victims of this week's Missouri floods are being warned of possible scammers.
Pulaski County Sheriff Ron Long issued a statement Thursday cautioning residents to be alert for identity thieves posing as government officials or charity workers offering help. Long says the scammers may request personal information, such as a Social Security number. The sheriff says the scammers might also go through trash and flood debris set out for disposal.
Other threats come from people representing fake charities who pressure potential donors for cash contributions for flood relief.
The sheriff also says natural disasters tend to attract shoddy contractors known as "storm chasers" who go door-to-door claiming to specialize in flood repair. Long says it's a good idea for homeowners to contact their insurance carriers for names of approved contractors.
Thursday's flooding has claimed one life. Police report that an 80-year-old Jefferson County woman after she was caught in a flash flood.
The woman was driving in DeSoto when it appears her car was swept off the road by flood waters. No more information on the woman's death has been released.
Nearly two dozen other drivers in Jefferson County were saved after becoming stuck in the water.
Parts of eastern Missouri and southwestern Illinois were hardest hit by rain that began Saturday afternoon and fell through Sunday. Potosi, Mo., got 4.4 inches of rain, Randolph County, Ill., 4.1 inches, Farmington, Mo., 3.9 inches. Combined with heavy rain the previous weekend and two big snows in the weeks before that, all the water is causing rivers to rise.
The National Weather Service cites several rivers at or near flood stage in Missouri, Illinois, Arkansas, Indiana and Iowa. A man was rescued from his flooded car in Perry County, Mo., Sunday. Dozens of roads and thousands of acres of farm land are under water.