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ALTON - Downtown Alton’s massive flood wall has become a large tourist attraction in recent days, but those visiting are asked to keep their distance.

Alton Police Public Information Officer Emily Hejna said people are wholeheartedly encouraged to visit business establishments in the Downtown Alton, but the wall from this point on is a forbidden spot for visitors.

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“It is not safe to be on or near the wall,” Hejna said. “We have placed yellow tape barriers all over Sugar Alley and no trespassing signs. Anyone caught on the wall or the other side of where the caution tape is will be arrested beginning tonight.”

Officer Hejna said a lot of people were taking photographs of their children on the wall on Thursday. She said the police know this is history in the making people want to see, but families and individuals need to be careful.

“We don’t want to make history in a tragic way,” she said.

Alton Mayor Brant Walker said there were an estimated 100 people down by the wall Thursday night, some walking on the wall. Walker emphasized all it would take is for one portion of the wall to break and the water pressure intensity could collapse the wall and Downtown Alton businesses would be greatly compromised.

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