Will they open the Morganza Floodway to relieve pressure on the levees in New Orleans and Baton Rouge? All the Corps of Engineers is waiting for is the flow rates to hit the required level, and then they will pull the trigger to send water cascading into areas from Northwest of Baton Rouge down to Terrebonne and Lafourche.
An estimated 25,000 people will be impacted by the intentional flooding.
“The Corps also presented us today with information on population statistics and structures that could be impacted by the opening of the Spillway,” Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal said. “Their information shows that there are about 2,500 people located inside the Spillway and 2,000 structures. In the backwater area, there are about 22,500 people and 11,000 structures that would be impacted by the Morganza Spillway opening.”
Col. Ed Fleming with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers notes the river has not been this swollen in more than 80 years.
“The flows and the stages you see are in exceedance of the flood of 1927,” Fleming said.
Jindal said, “We know the Corps will make the decision to open the Morganza Spillway when the trigger point of 1.5 million cubic feet per second at the Red River Landing gauge is reached. The Corps said they expect this trigger to be reached around by Saturday.”
He adds that roughly three million acres will be impacted by flooding with the opening of Morganza.