Mississippi Threatens the City

Posted on May 11, 2011 in Local Issues

On noon Tuesday the waters reached 17 feet, the highest it has been since the river began creeping up the levees, and with flooding in the Memphis area, officials must decide whether to open the Morganza floodway.

The Corps' "worst case prediction" map is courtesy of nola.com

Currently 72 bays of the Bonnet Carre have been opened , but experts speculate that even if the spillway diverts its maximum of 250,000 cubic feet of water per second, it may not be enough to prevent the river’s 1.5 million cubic feet from flooding. If this is seen to be the case, the Morganza floodgates will be opened to redirect an additional 300,000 cubic feet of water.

If the Morganza gate is opened, 3 million acres of land, including 18,000 acres of crops, would be flooded. Cities inside the Atchafalaya, including Melville, Butte Larose, and Krotz Springs would be flooded affecting over 24,000 people. Mandatory and voluntary evacuations have already been issued for some areas. Funneling the river into this area through a floodgate would also prevent many residents from collecting insurance payments as the flooding will not be a “natural disaster.”

However, the Corps of Engineers is not facing a Sophie’s Choice, as some of the Atchafalaya area will flood even if the gate remains closed. The Corps recently issued a map of the worst case scenario if the Morganza spillway is not opened and the levees are compromised. The map shows drastic flooding in the New Orleans area.

If you are affected by the floods and need legal representations, contact Bloom Legal at 504-599-9997 for a case evaluation.

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