A 70-year-old five-levee system precariously protects East St. Louis, Ill., and is nowhere near certification by the Army Corps of Engineers since it doesn't meet today's standards. During recent floods, sand boils have appeared. It will cost the impoverished area $200 million to fix the levees if they are to keep residents from being designated as living in an unprotected flood plain. One flood expert said "the current estimates for flood frequency and intensity appear to be grossly underestimated."

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