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Sat May 11, 2019, 08:12 PM

Statewide State Of Emergency In Louisiana; MS River Up 6 Inches In 24 Hours

As the flood-swollen Mississippi River rises across the South into Louisiana, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has opened the Bonnet Carré spillway north of New Orleans in a precautionary move to relieve potential stress on the city’s levees, which protect from catastrophic flooding. The spillway is 28 miles north of New Orleans. Most of the city is at or below sea level, so it is protected by levee systems. New Orleans suffered deadly flooding in Hurricane Katrina when levees were breached.

The Bonnet Carré spillway was recently closed on April 11 after it was opened to protect New Orleans was flooding and this is the first time in history the spillway has been opened two times in a year. Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards declared a statewide emergency on Friday due to flooding and heavy rains flooding that is continuing for some areas on Saturday.

The Mississippi River, due to heavy regional rainfall, has risen 6 inches in the past 24 hours, according to the U.S. Corps of Engineers, and with more rain expected through the weekend, the river is nearing dangers levels – exceeding April flooding levels which were the worst since 1973.

“These rains could elevate the Mississippi River above 17 feet with a peak as high as 17.5 feet at the Carrollton Gage,” the Corps said in a release on Frida. “In an abundance of caution the operation date is being moved forward to ensure the safe passage of this high water by limiting the elevations downriver of the spillway. Operation of the structure will relieve pressure on main levees, maintain river stages, and regulate the flow downriver from the spillway. “This will be the 14th operation of the structure since 1937 and the first time it has been opened twice during the same high water event.”



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