Mississippi River Flooding La Braces for Wall of Water PDF Imprimir E-mail

With the Army Corps of Engineers opening two additional gates at the Mississippi River's Morganza Spillway on Monday, Louisiana residents are bracing for a wall of water to barrel down on them, which is likely to swallow up their homes, their business, and their memories.

Water is now flowing into the spillway at a rate greater than that of Niagara Falls, more than 100,000 cubic feet per second.

At that rate, it would take just over an hour and a half to cover the entire island of Manhattan in a foot of water.

So far only 11 of the 125 gates have been opened and the Corps plans to open more as the river rises.

The action is intended to be the surest way to spare cities like New Orleans from another tragic flood.

But cities like Butte La Rose, La., which sits on floodplain to the south, are being sacrificed in order to prevent larger areas from massive flooding.

The Corps began flooding the spillway on Saturday, opening the floodgates for the first time in 40 years.

The goal is to divert the record high waters of the Mississippi away from Baton Rouge and New Orleans, choosing to risk smaller communities in an attempt to avert disaster in the most populous cities.

"It's really heart wrenching, that we here are going to be sacrificed for others. And it's a numbers game I guess," said Guy Comier, Parish President at St. Martins Church in Butte La Rose.

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