The army in a battle against the Mississippi river

Mississippi Flood 2011The Mississippi River is wreaking havoc on the people of Louisiana as previous estimates of flooding levels have been reassessed and raised due to additional rainfall. Despite previous measures taken by the Army Corps of Engineers, many areas are expecting record flood levels.  

The Governor of Louisiana met with the Unified Command Group, which is made up of business and city officials and key participants from the health and transportation sectors. After the revision of the flood estimates the group decided to begin a series of new preparedness actions.

As another preventive measure, the Army Corps of Engineers is considering opening a floodway, located in the middle of Louisiana. The four mile wide Morganza floodway has only been opened one time before, in 1973. The Army Corps of Engineers released a news statement telling citizens in more than twelve counties to be prepared to evacuate.

They stated that citizens should watch for information from state and local emergency officials, as well as their local media outlets. They would be given adequate notice to evacuate, but they must act quickly. According to the National Weather Service’s recent forecast, if the floodway isn’t opened, the Mississippi River will rise to levels just under six inches from the top of the floodwalls that protect the city of New Orleans.

The Army Corps of Engineers began opening the Bonnet Carre ́ spillway in Louisiana earlier today. The possibility of record flood levels and a slow moving river crest has caused the Army Corps of Engineers to initiate flood plans that were developed decades ago.

Even the maximum security Louisiana State Penitentiary has begun the first steps in their emergency evacuation plan. The flooding there is expected to be four feet higher than their highest levels previously recorded. The Louisiana Governor noted that even though this flood may be the highest levels recorded since the 1927 flood; it doesn’t mean the river will breach the levee system.

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