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The 90 Day Plan

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

FW: RRT6 Activated: 2011 Mississippi River Flood, Lower Mississippi River States

Feed: IncidentNews
Posted on: Sunday, May 08, 2011 5:00 PM
Author: NOAA
Subject: RRT6 Activated: 2011 Mississippi River Flood, Lower Mississippi River States


RRT6 Activation Issue: Mississippi Flooding and Opening of Morganza Waterway Could impact Facilities in the Atchafalaya River and Basin. USACE expects to be forced into opening the Morganza Floodway to help mitigate the threat of floodwaters on the Mississippi River on or about 13 May 2011 (possibly even sooner). This will represent the first opening of the Morganza Floodgates since the 1973 Flood and will move flood waters into flood prone areas west of the river. Rainfall and spring flooding in the Ohio River Valley has the Mississippi River running very high and this situation is expected to persist for at least two weeks. Flood gates on the Bonnet Carre Spillway structure in St. Charles Parish Louisiana will be opened starting today (Monday) to release water from the Mississippi River into the Lake Pontchartrain area to reduce the amount of water reaching New Orleans. The USACE will be (or likely has by now) asking the Mississippi River Commission for permission to open the Morganza Spillway structure. Opening the Morganza floodgates will release water into the Atchafalaya River and Atchafalaya Basin or spillway, which includes parts of St. Landry, St. Martin, Iberia and St. Mary parishes in the Acadiana area. Some communities, homes and businesses inside the spillway levees should start preparing now to evacuate if the Morganza is opened is the message being released. The threat is real, and with this threat there is the threat of possible pollution events. RRT6 has been activated and is coordinating with the State of Louisiana and the RRT6 Federal Partners as to what threat this may have on facilities that include oil refineries located on the Atchafalaya River and oil production facilities in the basin. NOAA's Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) as part of the Regional Response Team and as part of other regional coordination activities is monitoring the situation. Charlie Henry Acting Director NOAA's GOM Disaster Response Center

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