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Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 31, 2011 - State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts

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  • Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 31, 2011 - State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts

    May 09, 2011
    Governor Jindal Says US Army Corps Decision to Open Morganza Spillway Could Come Today, State Preparing

    BATON ROUGE ? Governor Jindal today held a UCG meeting with state agency heads and federal officials including the Corps of Engineers, the National Weather Service and the US Coast Guard to prepare for the rising Miss. River levels and the Corps? potential decision to open the Morganza Spillway.

    The Governor began the press conference today by thanking six fire chiefs that led search and rescue operations in Alabama following the deadly tornadoes there: Chief Charles Parent of New Orleans FD ? led Task Force 1, Chief Ed Smith of Baton Rouge FD ? led Task Force 2, Chief Brian Crawford of Shreveport FD ? led Task Force 3, Chief Eddie Laborde of Pineville FD ? led Regional Response Team 6, and Chief Jimmie Bryant of Monroe FD ? led Regional Response Team 8.

    The Governor said, ?On Monday, May 2nd, 130 of our first responders deployed at the request of Alabama officials to assist in rescue and recovery operations in Tuscaloosa. The mission of the Louisiana USAR Teams was to conduct secondary searches in a dense residential and commercial area of Tuscaloosa. These teams informed many family members who were waiting for information on their missing loved ones. Our Louisiana teams were able to search and clear a three-square-mile area, using heavy earth moving equipment to clear debris. We created USAR teams in 2008 under the Office of the State Fire Marshal and allocated $1.4 million for the initial purchase of equipment. We have heard many great reports from their work in Alabama and were able to thank them as a state Unified Command Group today.?

    Miss. River Update
    The Governor said the Army Corps briefed state officials today on the inundation levels expected up in North Louisiana and they said they expect those whose property was flooded in 2008 to be flooded again due to the rising river levels this year. Maps are available on the Corps? Vicksburg District website (http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/flood2011/index.aspx).

    The Coast Guard said they have closed vessel traffic around the Bonnet Carre. In Baton Rouge, they have established a traffic control point. They are also instituting tow size reductions and instituting vessel control restrictions on speed, wake and proximity to the levees. The Coast Guard has also asked local law enforcement to notify them if any vessels are traveling too close to the levee so they can pull them away.

    Morganza Spillway Update
    Governor Jindal said, ?Col. Ed Flemming, New Orleans District Commander of the Army Corps of Engineers, officially requested the Mississippi River Commission in Vicksburg to partially open the Morganza Spillway over the weekend. We know Army Corps Gen. Walsh is going to the Bonnet Carre Spillway today and Corps Col. Flemming is set to meet with him on his request to open Morganza, meaning there could be a final decision by the Corps on operating this structure as soon as today.

    ?The Corps also released Inundation Maps outlining possible areas that will be impacted by the operation of the Morganza Floodway. They expect the height of the water to reach between five and upwards of 25 feet above ground elevation, causing flooding through many southern portions of our state. Today, we are meeting with local officials in and around Krotz Springs, Butte La Rose and Morgan City who are expected to be impacted, and we are preparing all state agencies to assist in the evacuation of areas that must be evacuated and flood fighting and response operations as needed to assist citizens and protect property.

    ?LANG deployed senior leaders to assist parishes directly threatened by the possible opening of the Morganza Spillway last Friday. In conjunction with the Louisiana State Police and the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, these teams coordinated with Sheriffs and Emergency Directors through the weekend to ensure that Louisiana National Guard efforts are synchronized with parish efforts to notify all residents within the areas threatened by the possible opening of the Morganza Spillway.

    ?The Louisiana National Guard is mobilizing an additional 175 Guardsmen to prepare for the possible opening of the Morganza Spillway ? bringing the total Guardsmen activated to around 400 by the end of today. These additional Guardsmen will augment parish efforts to inspect levees and local law enforcement efforts to conduct ?door to door? notifications.

    ?In support of St. Mary Parish this weekend, LANG also transported 87 pallets of HESCO baskets from the East Jefferson Levee District to St. Mary Parish. This morning, we have Guardsmen and equipment on-site to support parish efforts to construct approximately 13,000 feet of flood protection barrier in Amelia and Morgan City. In St. Martin Parish, the Sheriff has begun notifying residents who may be impacted by the possible opening of Morganza by putting 879 voluntary evacuation notices on the doors of homes in the Butte La Rose area.

    ?We have asked the Coast Guard for air assets from Mobile, AL that can patrol and pinpoint any people who remain on the ground after possible evacuations. The Coast Guard has specific equipment that will be important to this effort.

    ?Our first priority is absolutely the safety of residents and our second priority is to protect property wherever we can.?

    The Governor said if the Spillway is opened, DOTD will close the portion of La. 1 that crosses the Morganza Spillway and perform an inspection of the structure prior to allowing traffic to flow. DOTD, the Corp and State Police are developing a traffic management plan to ensure the least amount of disruption to the traveling public. DOTD has placed "No Parking Signs" on the spillway to prevent parking and discourage motorists from stopping to view the water flow.

    Additionally, based on the potential opening of the Spillway, the U.S. 190 Morganza Spillway bridge repair project is on hold and the mats placed for equipment to access the work site are being removed from the floodway. DOTD will monitor state roadways that have been identified as being affected by the possible opening of the Spillway and close roads as appropriate.

    On Friday, DNR?s Office of Conservation sent notice by email and conducted a conference call with oil and gas operators in the Atchafalaya Basin to alert them to the potential opening of the Morganza Spillway.

    On Saturday, after receiving the projected inundation footprint outside the Basin from the Corps, DNR distributed an email alert to operators within the footprint notifying them of the potential for rising waters as predicted by the Corps if the Morganza were opened. This area outside the Atchafalaya Basin includes over 1,750 wells and more than 135 operators. Safety is a top concern on these structures as the Spillway is opened.

    DNR?s Fuel Team has been activated and identified two refineries that could be significantly impacted by high water. For the large refinery on the Mississippi River, this could result in reducing operating capacity to 75 percent for two weeks and then further significant reductions in operating capacity.

    DNR?s Office of Coastal Management is working closely with the Corps, St. Mary Parish, the Levee District, OCPR and others on an Emergency Use Authorization to locate and sink a barge on Bayou Shane to mitigate back water flooding when the Morganza Spillway is opened. They received verbal approval of this request today.

    Request for Federal Assistance
    The Governor said, ?Last Friday, Louisiana was granted a partial Disaster Declaration allowing us to ask the federal government for resources, but not paying for state resources. We are still requesting a full declaration for emergency protective measures, which would mean state expenses are reimbursed at 25 percent cost share.

    ?The US Department of Defense also denied our request for Title 32 status to fund the operations of the Louisiana National Guard on Friday and we are forming an appeal to seek this funding again, as the Guard is an essential part of our evacuation and flooding response plans. Especially now that we have a Presidential Disaster Declaration, we are appealing to the President that it is critical to use the Guard in responding to not just the Miss. River flooding, but also in the response to the operation of the Morganza Spillway.

    ?To date, the state has already spent $3.8 million in preparing for and responding to potential flooding and we expect this amount to increase significantly as the Miss. River continues to rise.?

    LANG Update
    This morning, the Louisiana National Guard deployed an LNO team to Lafourche Parish and now have LNO teams supporting 17 affected parishes in order to coordinate National Guard support to Parish efforts. In addition to Parish LNOs, the Louisiana National Guard also has a liaison team embedded with the Corps of Engineers.
    LANG has Liaison Teams deployed to 17 Parishes and also a Liaison Team embedded with the Corps of Engineers to coordinate National Guard support to Parish efforts to prevent flooding.
    ? Last Thursday: West Carroll, East Carroll, Madison, Tensas, Concordia
    ? By last Friday: Assumption, Avoyelles, Catahoula, Iberia, Iberville, LaSalle, Point Coupee, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, and Terrebonne.
    ? Yesterday: Lafourche LNO team.
    The Army Corps has also request LANG helicopters to fly the levees and do daily inspections.
    Previous missions LANG is still supporting, include:
    ? LANG is continuing to support the Department of Corrections at Angola
    ? LANG is continuing to support the threatened northeast Parishes and the 5th Levee District by monitoring levees, distributing equipment, and fortifying levees.
    DOTD Update

    DOTD has more than 74 staff members and 58 trucks and equipment actively deployed in flood prevention efforts.

    DOTD and CPRA are requesting the Coast Guard make appropriate river traffic restrictions to ensure the integrity of the state?s bridges and levee systems. Because of the high waters, both the state's bridge and levee systems are more vulnerable to marine vessel impact.

    An additional seven DOTD staff members have been reassigned to assist levee districts and the US Army Corps of Engineers in the 24-hour operation of levee inspections from the Arkansas line to the Old River Control Center in Lettsworth. This brings the total investment of DOTD personnel to 15. They began inspections on Friday, May 6.

    DOTD ordered an addition 11,880 linear feet of Hesco baskets on top of its previous order of 18,000 feet of baskets to place in reserve should the state need them. The Town of Vidialia already requested and received 4,500 linear feet of this reserve over the weekend. Shipments of baskets are being received continuously, with the total delivery scheduled to be delivered early next week.

    Bonnet Carre Spillway: The Bonnet Carre Spillway was opened today and DOTD will close the right shoulder westbound on I-10 over the Bonnet Carre Spillway Bridge. DOTD crews will make adjustments to the equipment camera controller cabinets in an effort to continuously monitor the water flow?s effect on the bridge. This closure will allow all vehicles to pass through the construction zone. DOTD encourages motorists traveling on I-10 and U.S. 61 over the Spillway to pay attention to the road and not drive distracted by the flow of water. Additionally, ?No Stopping on Bridge? signs have been put in place on I-10 and U.S. 61 and State Police and local law enforcement agencies are increasing patrols to discourage individuals from stopping to view water from the bridge.

    In East Carroll Parish - DOTD has hauled approximately 8,200 cubic yards of sand in support of levee fortification efforts. DOTD has 44 trucks actively hauling sand from Perryville (near Bastrop) to be distributed throughout East Carroll Parish.

    In Tensas Parish - La. 3078 is closed due to flooding on the riverside of the levee. In Newellton, DOTD hauled approximately 4,000 cubic yards of sand in support of levee fortification efforts.

    In Madison Parish - This week, DOTD is scheduled to deliver 50 barricades to Madison Parish.

    In Iberville Parish - Based on high waters and the need to utilize the highest ramp level on the dock, DOTD is placing vehicle restrictions on the Plaquemine Ferry. No trailers, no more than two axles, and no more than six wheels will be allowed to cross on the ferry. Large trucks and trailers should use the Interstate 10 Mississippi River Bridge. Also, the White Castle Ferry is now closed. It will resume service once the river waters subside.

    In Jefferson/Orleans/St. Bernard Parishes - The La. 18 drainage improvement project has been put on hold and will resume when river level lowers to 11 ft at the Carrollton gauge. Additionally, projects related to fender repairs on the Crescent City Connection Bridge and the repairs to the Chalmette Ferry Landing have been put on hold, pending the recession of water levels.

    ANGOLA Update
    The Governor said he went to Angola last Friday to review the Department?s evacuation plans for inmates there. He said, ?We want to make sure they have thought through possible scenarios in the event that the Angola facility is impacted by flooding. We also want to ensure that the Department is coordinating with Sheriffs? Offices and lending them any support they need if they have to evacuate or relocate prisoners at the parish level.?

    DOTD?s six-man survey crew has been redeployed to Angola Penitentiary to obtain further measurements along the facility?s levee tops. The crew will also be sent to Hunt Correctional facility to verify levee elevation marks. Proper levee elevations help inform flood protection leadership as to the exact level of rising waters.

    DOC Update
    On Friday, DOC acquired ten buses from Orleans Parish Sheriff Marlin Gusman for use during offender evacuations from Louisiana State Penitentiary. Phase I evacuations began today and operations continue smoothly there at this time.

    Due to the flooding situation and LSP offender evacuations, the Department has suspended many routine functions until further notice, including:
    ? All visitation at Louisiana State Penitentiary and Elayn Hunt Correctional Center is cancelled;
    ? All non-emergency medical trips are cancelled;
    ? Offender court hearings (unless parish facilities provide transportation) are cancelled starting May 9 ? June 17, 2011. (This does not include the Jeffrey Clark trial currently underway in W. Feliciana.)

    DOC Secretary Le Blanc also met Friday in Vidalia with the Louisiana Sheriffs? Association, Attorney General Buddy Caldwell and Col. Mike Edmondson to discuss worst-case scenarios for those parish jails that may be impacted by potential flooding in Northeast Louisiana as well as those parishes potentially impacted by the possible opening of the Morganza Spillway and associated backwater flooding.

    DHH Update
    DHH alerted nursing homes about the risk of flooding along the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers. 11 nursing homes have been identified as being at high risk and six at moderate risk for potential flooding. Camelot Leisure Living; Ferriday (Concordia Parish) evacuated 59 residents last week to Nursing Homes in Union and Bienville parishes.

    DHH alerted Louisiana?s hospitals about the risk of flooding along the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers. 16 Hospitals have been identified as being at high risk and one at moderate risk for potential flooding. Promise Hospital in Vidalia has completed evacuation of its patients to other hospitals in Office of Public Health Region 6 and Natchez, Mississippi.

    Those facilities that DHH identifies as ?at risk? are developing evacuation plans in coordination with DHH and many are moving patients onto other floors or different facilities in the event they do become flooded. DHH is also monitoring the drinking water system in Vidalia, which is in close proximity to rising water levels.

    RED CROSS
    The Governor encouraged anyone interested in volunteering with the Red Cross to go to RedCross.Org, put in your zip code and call your chapter phone number to ask for available training even before evacuations are needed.

    LDWF Update
    LDWF wants residents who may need assistance with the removal of black bears forced into populated areas by floodwaters to call 1-800-442-2511- toll free. The public is directed not to feed stranded wildlife and avoid disturbance of wildlife displaced by floodwaters. Contact an LDWF Field Office to report the location of stranded wildlife.

    GOHSEP Update
    A total of 21 parishes have now issued emergency declarations for this event.

    http://www.gov.louisiana.gov/index.c...articleID=2823
    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

  • #2
    Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Governor Jindal Press Conference May 10, 2011

    May 10, 2011

    Gov. Jindal: 2,500 Residents & 2,000 Structures Inside Spillway to be Impacted by Corps Opening Morganza


    BATON ROUGE - Governor Jindal held a press conference today following a UCG meeting with state and federal officials to outline information on the effects of the Corps? decision to open the Morganza Spillway.

    Governor 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.

    ?The Corps also presented us today with information on population statistics and structures that could be impacted by the opening of the Spillway. 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.

    ?Even before Gen. Walsh opens Morganza, there is no reason for people to wait. Now is the time to plan for where you would need to go and where you need to evacuate. Take these next few days to do everything you can to prepare your property and think about where you would stay if there is an evacuation order issued in your area. Most importantly, pay close attention to local law enforcement as they issue safety information for residents.?

    Governor Jindal added, ?The Corps told us that roughly three days after opening the Morganza Spillway, the water will reach the Morgan City area and about five days after reaching Morgan City, the water will rise back up in the northern areas, causing backwater flooding.

    ?In Baton Rouge, the Coast Guard told us the Hollywood Casino will shut down their operations at 45 feet, which is estimated to be on the 15th, and the Casino Rouge will shut down operations at 47 feet, which is projected to be on the 22nd. The Hollywood Casino in downtown Baton Rouge is already experiencing some flooding in their parking lot.

    ?Today, the Coast Guard is beginning to use the aircraft out of Mobile to evaluate the river levels, as we requested yesterday. The Coast Guard will also use this aircraft to locate anyone who may remain on the ground and be able to evacuate them before the Morganza Spillway is open. State agencies are also currently preparing search and rescue teams to assist citizens who may be stranded by flooding, as the water levels rise.?

    LA National Guard Update
    The Governor also said that Louisiana National Guard LNOs are in parishes throughout the state, reporting that several parishes have ordered voluntary evacuations for residents in at-risk areas related to the possible opening of the Morganza Spillway. These parishes include: St. Landry, St. Mary, St. Martin, W. Baton Rouge, Iberville, Assumption, and Ascension. Areas with a ?Strongly Advised Evacuation? order are in Catahoula, Point Coupee and Iberia Parishes for those areas inside the Atchafalaya basin levees.

    In support of state and parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard will have approximately 500 Guardsmen mobilized for this event, by the end of today. In the last 24 hours, the Louisiana National Guard deployed Liaison teams to Ascension and East Baton Rouge Parishes and now has LNO teams in 19 affected parishes in order to coordinate National Guard support to Parish efforts. In addition to Parish LNOs, the Louisiana National Guard also has a liaison team embedded with the Corps of Engineers.

    In support of St. Mary Parish yesterday, the Louisiana National Guard began constructing 13,000 feet of HESCO barrier in order to fortify and elevate levees along Lake Palourde to prevent backwater flooding in Morgan City and Amelia. Another 2,600 linear feet of HESCO baskets will be delivered to Amelia today.

    Yesterday in Morgan City, the Office of Coastal Protection and Restoration approved the purchase of 300 cubic yards of clay to put a ring levee around a pump station. OCPR also performed field inspections at the Spillway yesterday.

    Governor Jindal said, ?With the potential opening of the Morganza Spillway, Louisiana National Guardsmen are inspecting levees and assessing possible low-lying areas. Guardsmen are prepared to support parish actions to conduct door-to-door notifications and to support parish evacuation efforts in conjunction with the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and Louisiana State Police. As part of the contingency planning for the possible Spillway opening, the Louisiana National Guard has high-water vehicles staged in affected parishes in the event that evacuation is required.?

    Also in preparation for the possible Spillway opening, DOTD yesterday hauled 216 cubic yards of sand in stabilization efforts on the south Morganza Floodway guide levee. To date, DOTD has hauled 486 cubic yards of sand to help fight the seepage that is starting to occur in this area.

    Yesterday, LANG assisted in the identification of 40 Sand Boils in East Carroll and 20 Sand Boils in Concordia Parishes. LANG continues to assist locals in flood fighting efforts in North Louisiana. The Guard is also conducting aerial over-flights of the levees in support of local, state and federal agencies.

    DOTD Update
    DOTD now has more than 86 staff members and 65 trucks and equipment actively deployed in flood prevention efforts. A total of 15 DOTD staff members are actively assisting levee districts and the US Army Corps of Engineers in the 24-hour operation of levee inspections from the Arkansas line to the Old River Control Center in Lettsworth.

    DOTD currently has 25,380 linear feet of Hesco baskets ordered. Shipments of baskets are being received continuously, with 650 feet of Hesco baskets from BP. Governor Jindal said the state expects the need to exceed the amount of Hesco baskets available and have therefore begun to use recycled asphalt and other available resources to supplement sandbagging operations.

    Yesterday, DOTD began assisting the Red River, Atchafalaya, and Bayou Boeuf levee districts in the reinforcement of the Hamburg Loop levee along La. 451 also called the Big Bend levee. A total of 13 DOTD dump trucks have hauled approximately 1,720 cubic yards of fill material, which will be utilized by the levee districts to build up the elevation of the levee specifically in locations where a roadway reduced the levee?s original crown elevation. This work should continue into the weekend with an approximate total of more than 10,000 cubic yards of total fill material being utilized to heighten the low areas on the levee.

    At the request of the Coast Guard, construction on the Huey P. Long Bridge in Jefferson Parish has ceased operations that involve marine access to the structure and the contractor is in the process of removing and securing equipment from the river. Construction on the main structure continues.

    In East Baton Rouge, DOTD has hauled 224 cubic yards of sand in an effort to secure the U.S. 190 pump station located near the base of the Huey P. Long Bridge, also called the Old Mississippi River Bridge. Also, DOTD recently announced that the northbound and southbound outside lanes of River Road will close from Third Street to North Street in downtown Baton Rouge because of flood-protection and prevention work.

    In St. Martin Parish, the Butte La Rose Rest Area and Boat Landing is closed until further notice due to rising water. The Butte La Rose Welcome Center remains open and DOTD is building a levee around that structure to protect it from possible flooding.

    In West Feliciana Parish, La. 10 from Royal Street to the old ferry landing is closed due to flooding ? until further notice.

    In St. John the Baptist Parish, DOTD yesterday closed the Reserve/Edgard ferry until further notice due to high water.

    DOC Update
    More offender evacuations from Louisiana State Penitentiary are underway today. LSP will move Death Row offenders to the old Death Row. 184 offenders will move from LSP to the Elayn Hunt facility. A total of 192 offenders from Louisiana State Penitentiary were moved to Elayn Hunt Correctional Center (EHCC) on Monday. Security and medical staff from LSP have also been temporarily assigned to EHCC to assist with the care of these offenders.

    Around 100 offenders will be moved from the David Wade Correctional Center to Winn Correctional Center. This will free cellblock space for future evacuation plans. Also, all Parole Board hearings scheduled from Tuesday, May 10 through Friday, June 3, 2011 have been postponed and will be rescheduled at a later date.

    DOC is also working with other agencies to house around 150 sex offenders who may need to be evacuated in order to ensure public safety.

    DHH Update
    DHH is verifying that the 17 hospitals and 11 nursing homes they have now identified as at high-risk of flooding and two hospitals at moderate risk have adequate emergency response plans. DHH is also assessing any needs the hospitals may have to ensure safety of their patients whether they evacuate or shelter in place. DHH is ensuring that these facilities are able to evacuate, if needed or shelter in place.

    DHH is also contacting every in-home nursing service recipient in the 21 affected parishes to ensure they are prepared for evacuation. Additionally, DHH continues to monitor the drinking water systems in Stephensville, River Ridge and Vidalia and work with the National Guard to ensure drinking water will be available if the water systems become compromised.

    Coastal Update

    The CPRA is working with the St. Mary Levee district, Terrebonne Levee and Conservation District, St. Mary Parish, Terrebonne Parish and the city of Morgan City to sink a barge in Bayou Chene to reduce backwater flooding in St. Mary and Terrebonne Parish. The state has stationed a full-time project manager in Morgan City to work on this effort.

    Members of OCPR toured Morgan City, Stevensville and Amelia to determine need for flood protection in low-lying areas. OCPR delivered closure material for Bayou Chene. Closure will provide protection for backwater areas like Berwick and Amelia.

    DCFS Update
    DCFS is preparing state shelters in the event local governments need them and has the Alexandria Mega Shelter set up with 1,052 cots and Bastrop shelter set up with 1,600 cots.

    DCFS is also preparing to keep unaccompanied children, in the event they are separated from their parents during flooding.

    GOHSEP Update
    Four new parishes have declared states of emergency -- East Feliciana, Morehouse, St. Charles, and Franklin today - bringing the number of parishes with emergency declarations to 25 since yesterday.

    DEQ Update

    DEQ has already identified 33 post-water clean up sites where debris can be deposited after the flooding event.

    Entergy Safety
    Governor Jindal said Entergy reminded people to boat safely after floodwaters begin to rise, as some power lines may be live and come in close contact with rising flood waters. Local officials will issue warnings and advisories in coordination with Entergy as power lines pose risks in flooded areas.

    Federal Emergency Declaration
    Governor Jindal said that today Missouri and Tennessee received a Major Presidential Disaster declaration for flooding damage done in their area.

    The state estimates the cost of responding to this flooding event to date is currently $5.2 million. He said this rising cost underscores the importance of quickly getting a full Disaster Declaration to assist state and local governments in responding to flooding even before the Major Presidential Disaster Declaration is issued. The state also recently re-requested the US Department of Defense to fund the operations of the Louisiana National Guard, especially as the Corps has requested their equipment for many of their federal missions.

    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
    -Nelson Mandela

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Governor Jindal Press Conference May 11, 2011

      May 11, 2011
      Gov. Jindal: Citizens Should Act Now, Get Prepared For Flooding

      BATON ROUGE ? Governor Jindal met with the Unified Command Group of state and federal leaders today and held a press conference to give an update on state preparation efforts for the Corps? upcoming decision to open the Morganza Spillway.

      Governor Jindal said, ?We know the Corps plans to open the Morganza Spillway once the 1.5 million cubic feet per second trigger is reached at the Red River Landing gauge and we continue to work with parishes in the impacted area to prepare for the effects of this opening. Right now, they are measuring this gauge at 1.36 million cubic feet per second.

      ?It is very important, even as we continue to prepare for the worst and hope for the best, that citizens in the Morganza Spillway area continue to listen to their local officials and news on the impact of opening the Spillway. People in those areas that are shown to be inundated by the opening of the Spillway should not wait. Don?t wait for an official notice from the Corps on the opening of the Spillway. Act now and be prepared as if this will happen. It is better to be over-prepared. Now is the time to make sure you take every step you can to get ready for this event.

      ?The Corps says Col. Fleming is traveling to Butte La Rose and Morgan City to brief residents about the impact of opening the Spillway in their areas. The Weather Service also said they have increased the Butte La Rose crest estimate to 29 feet.

      ?The Corps will open 38 more bays on the Bonnet Carre Spillway today and they expect this Spillway to be at complete capacity by the 14th. Yesterday, the Corps began to degrade the potato ridge levee around the Morganza Spillway to prepare for the opening of this structure, which will take four days in total to degrade. They said degrading this levee will help provide them with a better flow when their trigger point is reached for opening the Spillway.

      ?Working with the US Coast Guard, the Corps said they will close river locks as water levels continue to rise. When the Old River gauge reaches 62.5, they will close the locks there; and in Baton Rouge, locks will close when the gauge reaches 45.

      ?The Corps said if they decide to open the Spillway, it will take a week for them to fully open the structure. Also, the Alon Refinery in Krotz Springs will have to close if the Spillway is opened.

      ?The Coast Guard also reported that the Amelia Casino will stay open until the road leading the casino is flooded and prevents people from traveling to it. The Coast Guard has also deployed LNOs to river parishes in order to keep them updated on river traffic and alerted to the possible travel of dangerous cargo in their area.

      ?In Krotz Springs, the National Guard already began the Krotz Springs Levee project by staging 200 yards of asphalt on it with ten more trucks already lined up. CPRA is also working to supply 10,000 feet of HESCO baskets to this area.

      ?In St. Mary Parish, LANG continues to construct 13,000 feet of HESCO barrier in order to fortify and elevate levees along Lake Palourde to prevent backwater flooding in Morgan City and Amelia. As of last night, crews stretched and filled 2,240 feet of HESCO barrier and continue construction today. The total project will be 10,000 feet. To support the HESCO site near Amelia, crews placed 150 feet of barrier this morning and continue this work today. The total project there will be 3,000 feet. LANG expects to complete these operations by May 13th.

      ?In Assumption Parish, the Guardsmen completed training on installing tiger tubes. Today, crews are assisting the parish in identify low areas on an inner protection levee in the vicinity of Pierre Part. Once they identify those areas below five feet, crews will begin installing the tiger tubes. To support deliberate sweeps of the floodway, we have identified areas of interest to focus infrared radar over-flights to identify citizens remaining in the easement area.

      ?The National Guard also has high water vehicles and boats staged in the event that high water evacuations are required. Also, the Guard continues to work with GOHSEP, Wildlife and Fisheries, State Police, and other agency partners to coordinate search and rescue plans. The Louisiana National Guard continues to provide aviation support to assess levees and possible inundation areas. They are also providing aviation support to the Vicksburg District Corps of Engineers for levee reconnaissance.

      ?In the last 24 hours, the Louisiana National Guard has deployed liaison teams to East Baton Rouge Parish, with LNO Teams now in 19 affected parishes in order to coordinate National Guard support to parish efforts.
      ?Yesterday, the National Guard also contacted additional parishes that could be threatened by flooding to offer LANG LNO support. LNOs are prepared to deploy to these parishes upon request. In addition to Parish LNOs, LANG has liaison teams embedded with the Corps of Engineers and the Coast Guard?s New Orleans Sector Office, where they will assist with Spillway Evacuation Sweeps.

      ?In support of parishes that will be impacted by Corps? decision to open the Morganza Spillway, Louisiana Guardsmen continue to work with parish officials to conduct door-to-door notifications and area evacuations. In conjunction with the Department of Wildlife and Fisheries and Louisiana State Police, the Louisiana National Guard continues to plan post-evacuation security in support of local law enforcement agencies. The National Guard is also patrolling levees, assessing canals for water levels, and reporting information to parish officials. Additionally, Guardsmen provided Parish officials with inundation maps to conduct detailed analysis of possible flooding in their Parishes.?

      LANG currently has approximately 600 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. The Guard continues to support efforts to monitor levees, distribute equipment and supplies, and fortify levees in East Carroll, Madison, Tensas, and Concordia Parishes. Guardsmen are also assessing areas in LaSalle, Catahoula, and Avoyelles Parishes in preparation for potential backwater flooding. In total, the Louisiana National Guard assisted in the identification of 45 Sand Boils in East Carroll, 20 Sand Boils in Concordia Parish, and 1 Sand Boil in Tensas Parish.

      The Governor said that Arkansas asked LANG for assistance in their flood fighting efforts to combat a sand boil of approximately 40 meters on a Mississippi River Levee. Initial sandbagging will be augmented with large sandbag drops in coordination with other engineer operations. The AR National Guard is preparing to start helicopter operations by air dropping 2,000 to 3,000 pound sandbags. The Louisiana National Guard is providing 75 helicopter slings and technical assistance to the AR National Guard in order to coordinate for the large sand bag drops.

      Coastal Update
      The Governor said CPRA is providing the St. Mary Levee District and Terrebonne Levee District with $500,000 each ? a total of $1 million - in order to fund ongoing levee fortification and flood protection work in areas at risk of flooding. These funds will be made available immediately to the levee districts to support efforts in addition to those being funded directly by the state - such as HESCOs, pumps, sand, dirt and other resources.

      CPRA expects this funding to be fully reimbursed by FEMA once a full disaster declaration is issued to allow access to federal public assistance funds.

      Pumps are being moved to strategic locations in Terrebonne and St. Mary parish to prevent flooding. CPRA stockpiled 7,000 cubic yards of fill material in Amelia for Hesco basket operations. Also, CPRA project management staff was transferred to Morgan City to facilitate flood-fighting efforts in the area. Additional requests for Hesco baskets and other flood-fighting measures have been placed with the Corps of Engineers and FEMA. Sheet piles for the 1,200 foot sinkable-barge closure are arriving today and the Corps will begin placement operations in Morgan City tomorrow.

      The CPRA is working to establish a levee along nine miles of Highway 182 in Terrebonne Parish to prevent backwater flooding. A combination of HESCOs, dirt, sandbags and other protection features are all being considered.

      DOTD Update
      To date, DOTD has utilized a total of 34,700 sandbags and 151 personnel activated.

      In St Mary Parish, DOTD hauled 226 cubic yards of reclaimed asphalt pavement to the Patterson levee for the St Mary Levee District and Corp to begin placement. This effort is in support of the levee districts efforts to build up the low areas of the levee at Wilson?s Landing and Possum Bayou Pump Station in Patterson, La. Additionally, DOTD is assisting in the fortification measures around Possum Bayou Pump Station.

      Today, DOTD put a hold on work involving accessing the newly-opened John James Audubon bridge from the river such as the installation of protective berms and the tower crane base removal, due to high water in the Mississippi River. However, work continues inside the towers, on the concrete finish, and in areas around the approaches.

      DOTD is also building an emergency levee at the Butte La Rose Rest Area to limit as much as possible future flooding in the area. Yesterday, the Butte La Rose Rest Area Boat Landing closed until further notice due to rising water. The emergency levee construction will be complete at the end of the week and include building a levee made of Reclaimed Asphalt Pavement (RAP) to the elevation 26.2 feet.

      ? The top of the levee will be 4 foot wide and topped with a temporary flood control product called Metalith ? a prefabricated steel barrier unit.
      ? ResponseForce1 Corp. has donated their product, Metalith, for this project. Including the Metalith, the elevation will reach 29.2 feet which is 2 feet above the predicted flood elevation provided to DOTD by the Corps.
      ? DOTD is working with local law enforcement to maintain emergency access to the boat landing as well as to notify local boaters of the pending construction.

      In East Baton Rouge, DOTD put 30 sandbags on the levee in downtown Baton Rouge. They also put sandbags on manholes there to prevent water backing up on the road from the Miss. River. They are planning to now drain the road into the Capital Lake.

      The Crescent City Connection Division is monitoring three New Orleans area ferries - Algiers, Chalmette and Gretna - multiple times a day and is projecting that based on water levels the Lower Algiers/Chalmette ferry may close by the end of the week.

      DOTD placed 30 sandbags and 15 cubic yards of sand on the Downtown Baton Rouge levee to prevent floodwater from flowing into River Road. Yesterday, approximately 2000 feet of the northbound and southbound outside lanes of U.S. 190 Business (River Road), starting from Third Street to North Street in Downtown Baton Rouge closed due to high water flood protection and prevention activities. This closure will extend through the duration of the high water event.

      In East Carroll Parish, DOTD has delivered a total of 17,900 sandbags.
      At Hunt Correctional today, DOTD?s 6-man survey crew is conducting levee elevation verification work to help inform flood protection efforts.
      In Concordia Parish, beginning Saturday, May 14, DOTD will prohibit truck traffic on the portions of La. 15 and La. 3196 that traverse the top of the levee. Passenger vehicle traffic will be the only traffic permitted to travel on the paved portions atop the levee, along La. 15 and La. 3196. DOTD already began placing notices to provide the trucking community advance alerts on the pending vehicle restrictions.

      In Iberville Parish, the Plaquemine Ferry is currently operating its normal hours today but it will be closed until further notice starting tomorrow morning, due to high water.

      To create more fill material for levee fortification on the La. 451 Big Bend
      levee, DOTD increased their forces to a total of 16 DOTD dump trucks hauling approximately 2,376 cubic yards of material. The fill material will be utilized by the Red River, Atchafalaya, and Bayou Boeuf levee districts to build up the elevation of the levee specifically in locations where a roadway reduced the levee?s elevation.

      DOC Update
      DOC announced that offender visitation at Avoyelles Correctional Center and Dixon Correctional Institute is cancelled until further notice. Louisiana State Penitentiary and Elayn Hunt Correctional Center had previously announced visitation cancellations until further notice.

      Phase II offender evacuations are now underway. Some offenders from David Wade Correctional Center are being temporarily assigned to other state correctional facilities to prepare for the future arrival of offender evacuees from Louisiana State Penitentiary. Today, 100 offenders are going to Rayburn Correctional Center and another 100 offenders are going to Allen Correctional Center.

      Elayn Hunt Correctional Center is supporting sandbag operations for the Pontchartrain Levee District. Crews have filled 12,000 sandbags from May 2 through May 10, 2011. DOC is also surveying state correctional facilities to ascertain their ability to support sandbagging operations to support anticipated requests. DOC is sending 25 work release offenders to supplement sandbag operations at the West Baton Rouge Parish Prison.

      Louisiana State Penitentiary officials met with Entergy officials regarding a substation near the prison that is partially submerged due to high water. Entergy agreed not to de-energize the substation provided there was 24-hour security provided around the substation. West Feliciana Sheriff Austin Daniel agreed to provide this security that so electricity to the prison would not be interrupted.

      ENTERGY/PSC
      The Governor said Entergy also briefed state officials today. Entergy said they expect to de-energize a total of 3,600 customers if the Morganza Spillway is open. A total of 2,900 of these customers are in Southern Louisiana. In the Northern part of the state, there are 315 Entergy customers who have already been de-energized as a safety precaution due to flooding there. The Governor said Entergy looks for a level of water that would be as high as an electrical outlet in a home, and would de-energize an area before water reached that level.

      DEQ Update
      Yesterday, DEQ Secretary Peggy Hatch signed a Declaration of Emergency and Administrative Order due to the imminent threat of flooding along the Mississippi River. The Order establishes general procedures for the management of floodwater and the operation and monitoring of wastewater treatment facilities in the event of high water levels. It also directs solid and hazardous wastes to be managed in accordance with DEQ?s Debris Management Plan and issues guidelines for open burnings, air emissions, asbestos cleanup, and underground storage tanks.

      LSP Update
      The Louisiana State Police Gaming Enforcement Section reports that the Pinnacle Casino project in south Baton Rouge was ordered to stop construction earlier today by the Ponchartrain Levee District because of the 17-foot river level.

      The Louisiana State Police Gaming Enforcement Section is working closely with the Corps of Engineers and East Baton Rouge Public Works to monitor the rising river level effects on downtown riverboat casinos. Both casinos have contingencies in place to shut down if necessary.

      DCFS Update
      DCFS is completing preparations at the Alexandria Mega Shelter, which can now support around 2,400 citizens. There are also 1,600 cots available in the Bastrop Shelter.

      AG Department Update
      The Agriculture Department is drafting a federal disaster declaration for crop loss that will be sent to the Governor tomorrow to forward on to the USDA Secretary at the federal level in order to activate federal assistance funds.

      GOHSEP Update
      One other parish declared a state of emergency on Tuesday ? Lafourche, bringing the total number of parishes with emergency declarations to 26.

      DNR Update
      DNR?s Office of Coastal Management coordinated a conference call for the refinery members of the Fuel Team in order to gather information from the Coast Guard on restrictions currently being imposed on river traffic. This information will allow the refineries to plan to lessen the decline in operating capacity due to such restrictions. Six wells have been reported shut-in in anticipation of the Corps? decision to open the Morganza Spillway structure.

      DHH Update
      DHH is continuing to monitor drinking water and they will work with DOC to form ?casket recovery? teams in the event that graves are unearthed by the flooding.
      ###

      http://www.gov.louisiana.gov/index.c...articleID=2825
      "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
      -Nelson Mandela

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Governor Jindal Press Conference May 12, 2011 - Gov. Jindal: We're Not Waiting for the Corps, We're Taking Action Now

        PRESS RELEASE
        <!-- Title of the Press Release -->Gov. Jindal: We're Not Waiting for the Corps, We're Taking Action Now
        <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
        BATON ROUGE (May 12, 2011) - Governor Bobby Jindal met today with the Unified Command Group (UCG) of state and federal leaders to get an update on the rising Mississippi River. Later in the day, Governor Jindal traveled to Krotz Springs and Morgan City to meet with local officials and get an on-the-ground assessment of preparedness efforts for the coming flood waters. Governor Jindal emphasized that while the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has not given a date for the Morganza Spillway to open; state and local officials are taking action now to get prepared and constructing barriers to protect people and property from the flood.

        Governor Jindal said, "We're not waiting for the Corps. We've been taking aggressive steps to help our people protect their families, property and livelihoods from the rising river. We don't have the time to wait for official notice. It's critical that Louisianians get prepared now to protect their families and homes."


        Morganza Spillway Update

        Governor Jindal said, "At Red River landing today, the Army Corps said the water flow is currently at 1.41 million cubic feet per second, and the Corps said they are on track to open the Morganza Spillway when their trigger point of 1.5 million cubic feet per second is reached - which they expect to be this Saturday.

        "The river is 57.9 feet high this morning at the Morganza Structure. The structure is 60 feet high. The Corps told us they would work to prevent any overtopping of this structure before it is opened by possibly increasing the flow through the Old River structure. The Coast Guard is flying one fixed wing a day and one helicopter to check the river flow and locate any hot spots of residents located on the ground."


        Krotz Springs Flood Fighting

        The Louisiana National Guard is assisting Krotz Springs and St. Landry Parish Officials by helping to construct two miles of levee to protect a 240-home subdivision, electrical substation and the Alon refinery.

        A total of 5,000 feet of HESCOs are currently staged in Krotz Springs. An additional 5,000 feet are currently being resourced for placement there. The temporary levee will help protect 240 homes and the Alon Refinery from flooding.

        DOTD deployed 50 trucks to haul reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) and sand to Krotz Springs in St. Landry Parish to be utilized in the construction of a flood protection barrier. DOTD already utilized approximately 410 cubic yards in RAP materials to build a 300 linear foot base. HESCO baskets will be placed on top of the newly laid RAP base to construct a barrier wall to protect residents from floodwaters.


        St. Mary Parish Flood Fighting

        In Morgan City - as of last night - LANG crews stretched and filled over 3,240 feet of HESCO barrier and are continuing construction today. (Total Project increased from 10,000 feet to 11,000 feet.) LANG is prepared to conduct 24-hour operations on this project.

        In Amelia, crews placed 600 feet of barrier of the original 2,600 feet required. (Total Project increased from 2,600 feet to 9,000 feet.) To obtain the additional 7,000 feet of HESCO barrier required by OCPR, Guardsmen will pickup and transport 4,500 feet of HESCO from Lafayette and the Corps of Engineers will provide 3,000 feet.

        The Louisiana National Guard expects to complete these projects - a total of 20,000 feet - by May 13th.

        DOTD helped to complete the levee elevation efforts in Patterson - hauling 562 cubic yards of reclaimed asphalt pavement to the Patterson levee.

        Designs for the submersible barge structure in St. Mary call for a total of four barges, 1,000 feet of sheetpile and rocks to complete the closure. Work is proceeding with the Corps and the CPRA made $1 million available directly to the St. Mary Levee District and the Terrebonne Levee and Conservation District ($500,000 each) for flood-fighting efforts.


        Additional Flood Fighting Efforts in State

        The Louisiana National Guard now has approximately 700 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. In support of parishes in Northeast Louisiana, Louisiana Guardsmen continue to support efforts to monitor levees, distribute equipment and supplies, and to fortify levees in East Carroll, Madison, Tensas, and Concordia Parishes.

        Guardsmen are also assessing areas in LaSalle, Catahoula, and Avoyelles Parishes in preparation for potential backwater flooding. In total, the Louisiana National Guard has assisted in the identification of more than 46 Sand Boils in East Carroll, 20 Sand Boils in Concordia Parish, and 4 Sand Boil in Tensas Parish.

        LANG is supporting Coast Guard over-flights of the Morganza floodway and identifying areas of interest to focus infrared radar in order to identify citizens remaining in the easement area.

        The National Guard is also providing aviation support to the Vicksburg District Corps of Engineers for levee reconnaissance.

        The Louisiana National Guard is prepared to assist with the delivery and distribution of bulk and bottle drinking water as necessary.

        • Based on the community water systems identified by DHH, the Louisiana National Guard identified and prepared water transport vehicles to quickly respond to the possible loss of water in River Ridge, Stephensville, and Vidalia.
        • Additionally, based on DHH's list of Hospitals and Nursing Homes in potential flood areas, the Louisiana National Guard is developing contingency plans to quickly respond with equipment to augment DHH evacuation efforts, should they become necessary.
        Today, the Guard is reviewing Wildlife and Fisheries updated search and rescue plans and synchronizing its contingency plans to augment and complement their effort. Guard aviation, high water vehicles, and boat rescue assets are prepared and ready to support search and rescue, if needed.

        The National Guard has LNO Teams in 19 affected parishes in order to coordinate National Guard support to Parish efforts.

        DOTD has 151 staff members and 59 trucks and equipment actively deployed in flood prevention efforts. To date, DOTD has hauled 34,700 sandbags and 9,700 cubic yards of sands.

        In Morganza, DOTD hauled an additional 344 cubic yards of sand in stabilization efforts on the south Morganza Floodway guide levee. To date, DOTD has hauled 830 cubic yards of sand to help fight the seepage that is starting to occur in this area.

        Yesterday in Assumption Parish, the National Guard assisted the parish in assessing the Pierre Part ring levee system and identified areas for a Tiger Dam project. Today, crews are assisting the parish in assessing levee heights in the vicinity of Bayou L'ourse and will begin installation and construction of the tubes. In Assumption Parish, DOTD has delivered 750 linear feet of HESCO baskets and 36 cubic yards of sand to help fortify the parish's existing sheet pile wall along La. 663.

        CPRA activated contingency contracts for pumping capacity in Terrebonne and St. Mary Parishes. The Terrebonne Levee and Conservation District is also contracting pumping capacity. Pumps will on site by this weekend. In Terrebonne Parish, the CPRA is working to establish a levee along nine miles of Highway to prevent backwater flooding. A combination of HESCOs, dirt, sandbags and other protection features are all being considered.

        In New Orleans, limestone and sandbags are being placed near the Natchez Wharf and protection measures have also been put in place to address vulnerabilities in the vicinity of the old Orange Street wharf. Seepage is also being monitored at the Jackson Barracks.

        In Iberville Parish, the Plaquemine Ferry is closed until further notice, due to high water.

        In St. Martin Parish, Approximately 450 cubic yards of reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP), 125 cubic yards of sand and 280 feet of Metalith has was placed by DOTD in its construction of an emergency levee at the Butte La Rose Rest Area. The emergency levee construction will be complete at the end of the week and entail building a levee to limit future flooding in the area. Metalith is a prefabricated steel barrier unit. The emergency levee will be built to the 30-foot elevation mark, which is two feet above the predicted flood elevation.

        In East Baton Rouge Parish, DOTD is reviewing options to protect its pump station at the foot of the US 190 Bridge in E. Baton Rouge Parish by constructing a flood protection barrier. Currently, sandbagging efforts have not halted the water seeping into the structure. The flooding or closure of the pump station would require the closure of the U.S. 190 bridge also called the Old Mississippi River Bridge. Today, East Baton Rouge Parish in coordination with DOTD is starting operations to draw down water in the Capitol Lake in Baton Rouge to increase the water storage for this area and mitigate potential flooding.

        To date, DOTD placed 32 Supersack sand bags - large bags holding 1 cubic yard of sand each - and 15 cubic yards of sand on the Downtown Baton Rouge levee to prevent floodwater from flowing into River Road. Approximately 2,000 feet of the northbound and southbound outside lanes of River Road, starting from Third Street to North Street in Downtown Baton Rouge is closed due to high water flood protection and prevention activities. This closure will extend through the duration of the high water event.


        DOC Update

        All 200 offenders moved from David Wade Correctional Center to Allen and Rayburn Correctional Centers arrived at their destinations yesterday. Phase II of the offender evacuation process continues today with the evacuation of offenders from Angola to various state correctional facilities, in accordance with their evacuation plans.

        A total of 600 offenders will be moved today into the capacity freed up at other facilities yesterday.


        DHH Update

        DHH continues to closely coordinate with the 16 hospitals identified as at high risk of flooding and seven hospitals at moderate risk to ensure their evacuation plans are in place and any additional assistance they need is provided.

        Heritage Manor Nursing Home in Ferriday is transferring 20 bed-bound residents to Glenburney Nursing Home and Adams County Nursing Center, both located in Natchez, MS as a cautionary measure and to prepare for a quicker full evacuation if necessary. The remaining 58 residents are not being evacuated at this time.

        DHH is coordinating cemetery recovery operations with other state agencies and local coroner offices, in the event they are needed following the opening of the Morganza Spillway.

        DHH is also coordinating with 38 dialysis facilities in the 24 parishes along the Mississippi and Atchafalaya rivers to confirm they are aware of their risk for flooding and sharing pertinent information with their patients who may be affected.


        LSP Update

        Louisiana State Police met with officials at the Morganza Spillway to evaluate traffic and public safety concerns and to establish an area to stage the State Police Mobile Command Post.


        DCFS Update

        If needed, DCFS would provide support to authorities throughout Concordia and Catahoula parishes to safely evacuate and register citizens who require evacuation assistance and sheltering. They are prepared for 3,000 total evacuees requiring registration there.

        DCFS is now also establishing a sheltering "Go-Team" of 12 people to be ready to open a Critical Transportation Needs shelter on short notice.


        LED Update

        LED's Business Expansion and Retention Group contacted 109 companies to date about flood threats and how they can assist with their business needs.


        "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
        -Nelson Mandela

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Governor Jindal Press Conference May 13, 2011 - Governor Jindal: Corps Says Morganza Spillway Very Likely to Open Over Weekend, Those in Impacted Areas Should Activate Evacuation Plans

          PRESS RELEASE
          <!-- Title of the Press Release -->
          Governor Jindal: Corps Says Morganza Spillway Very Likely to Open Over Weekend, Those in Impacted Areas Should Activate Evacuation Plans
          <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
          BATON ROUGE (May 13, 2011) - Governor Jindal held a press conference today following a UCG meeting of state and federal officials about the rising Miss. River levels, announcing that Gen. Walsh of the Corps of Engineers expects to officially open the Morganza Spillway over the weekend.

          Governor Jindal said, "Based on what we heard from Gen. Walsh in a phone call today, it is extremely likely that the Morganza Spillway will open by tomorrow night or Sunday at the latest. The General will have a meeting with his engineers at 2PM today and then call me with another update at that time and possibly give us the official notification of the opening.

          "We have already notified the Sheriffs and the National Guard of those areas we expect to be impacted and to move forward on their work to get notices to those who will be impacted inside the Spillway. We also have assets staged by DOTD and LDWF in order to help those who may need assistance in high waters.

          "While we still do not have an official notification from General Walsh at this time, he indicated it is extremely likely that the Spillway will be open today or tomorrow and we want people to take action now.

          "When the Spillway is opened, it will not be fully opened all at once. The Spillway has a capacity of 600,000 cubic feet per second and the Corps expects to operate it at half of its full capacity, slowly opening a few gates at a time."

          To the people inside the Morganza Spillway, the Governor stressed the importance of the Corps' expected timeline to operate the Spillway. Governor Jindal said, "If you live in the Spillway, now is the time to activate your evacuation plan. Listen to your local officials and Sheriffs. Don't delay. Don't hope that something will change. Given what the Corps is telling us, our people need to take action now as if the Spillway is opening tomorrow or Sunday. Again, it is very likely to be opened over the weekend. Take action now. Look at the inundation maps and if you are in an area likely to be impacted, start to move your belongings or animals now. The most important update we want to give this morning is that it is extremely likely the Spillway will be opened as soon as tomorrow or as late as Sunday. The Corps will talk directly to the media as they gather more data, but we want people to take action now."


          STATE PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS

          In support of parishes threatened by the opening of the Morganza Spillway, National Guardsmen continue to work with parish officials to conduct door-to-door notifications and area evacuations. The National Guard currently has 700 activated guardsmen. DOTD has 171 staff members and 140 trucks and equipment actively deployed in flood prevention.

          The National Guard continues to plan for Search and Rescue operations with Wildlife and Fisheries, State Police, and other agency partners, should they be needed. The Louisiana National Guard continues to coordinate with the Coast Guard on aerial overflights of the Morganza floodway.

          Assumption Parish: Yesterday, National Guard crews assisted Assumption Parish in assessing levee heights in the vicinity of Bayou L'Ourse and identified areas for a Tiger Dam installation project. DOTD delivered 124 cubic yards of sand to help construct a 700 foot sand barrier along La. 663 in Assumption Parish. This brings the total to 160 cubic yards of sand delivered in addition to the previously delivered 750 linear feet of HESCO baskets. This barrier will ensure floodwaters do not inundate La. 663 as well as protect nearby neighborhoods.

          East Baton Rouge Parish: Today, DOTD began construction of a 1,000 linear foot flood barrier to keep water from flowing into U.S. 190 pump station. In support of these construction efforts, DOTD is closing the east and westbound outside right lanes of U.S. 190 at the Old Mississippi River Bridge until further notice. This closure will allow thru traffic in the left hand lane only. E. Baton Rouge Parish officials are laying two miles of Tiger Dam for extra two feet of levee protection along the mainline levee downtown.

          St. Landry Parish: Yesterday, National Guardsmen assisted the parish and DOTD in construction of over 300 feet of levee in Krotz Springs which brings to total effort to 2,100 feet to date (Total project will be 10,000 feet). Today, OCPR is also providing 5,000 feet of Super Bag material in order to provide additional height to the levee protection. Over the weekend, DOTD will lay down 9,000 feet of six-foot RIB (large sandbag material) to help complete the levee structure there. This morning, DOTD deployed 50 trucks to haul reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) and sand to Krotz Springs in St. Landry Parish to be utilized in the construction of a flood protection barrier. DOTD already utilized approximately 410 cubic yards in RAP materials to build a 300 linear foot base. HESCO baskets will be placed on top of the newly laid RAP base to construct a barrier wall to protect residents from floodwaters.

          St. Mary Parish: The Louisiana National Guard continues construction of 20,000 feet of HESCO barrier in order to fortify and elevate levees along Lake Palourde to prevent backwater flooding in Morgan City and Amelia.
          • Morgan City worksite: Working 24 hour operations, National Guard crews stretched and filled over 5,700 LF of HESCO barrier to date and continue construction today with a projected completion date of 14 May. (Total Project is 11,000 feet).
          • Amelia worksite: As of last night, crews placed 2,700 feet of HESCO barrier. (Total Project will be 9,000 feet). Today, the Louisiana National Guard continues the construction and installation of this protection barrier and will begin 24-hour operations.

          DOTD hauled 840 cubic yards of sand in its efforts to support LANG in the construction of a flood protection wall for the town of Amelia. Additionally, DOTD deployed 20 trucks to haul material to the site. Today, DOTD will provide 3 dozers to assist St Mary parish in raising existing levees to an appropriate flood protection height.

          Avoyelles Parish: An additional 2,250 cubic yards of fill material has been hauled by DOTD to reinforce the Hamburg Loop/Big Bend levee along La. 451, which brings the total material hauled to date at 6,346 cubic yards. A total of 16 DOTD dump trucks have been dedicated to this effort, which is should be complete today.

          Madison Parish: Today, DOTD delivered 50 barricades to Madison Parish for staging.

          Morganza Spillway: DOTD hauled an additional 200 cubic yards of sand in stabilization efforts on the south Morganza Floodway guide levee. To date, DOTD has hauled 1,030 cubic yards of sand to help fight the seepage that is starting to occur in this area.

          St. Martin Parish announced that Stephensville Elementary will be closed beginning Tuesday, May 17 and will remain closed for the remainder of the year. The voluntary evacuation there and water on roads is making it difficult for bus routes. The schools in upper St. Martin Parish will remain open.

          Concordia Parish: In Vidalia, the state provided 22,500 feet of HESCOs for protection efforts underway on the Vidalia waterfront. An additional 4500 linear feet of protection measures are currently pre-staged in key areas along the Mississippi River in this region. Yesterday, National Guardsmen assisted in the identification of 19 additional Sand or Pin Boils in Concordia Parish bringing the total found in the parish to 39.

          East Carroll Parish: 7,500 cubic yards of sand has been loaded and hauled to support sandbagging operations in North Louisiana. Seven dump trucks, a front end loader and transport vehicles are filling and transporting 53,000 sandbags to address fortification efforts in support of levee district and parish requests. Currently, the state has 45 personnel, 11 trucks, one lowboy and a front-end loader in support of flood-fighting and levee inspection efforts.

          An estimated more than 10,000 acres of farmland north of Lake Providence is being inundated as a result of overtopping of an old levee. This is not a mainline river levee. Previously, National Guardsmen have identified 46 Sand Boils in East Carroll Parish and 4 in Tensas Parish.


          "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
          -Nelson Mandela

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Governor Jindal Press Conference May 16, 2011 - Gov. Jindal: Residents Must Pay Attention to Local Warnings

            PRESS RELEASE
            <!-- Title of the Press Release -->Gov. Jindal: Residents Must Pay Attention to Local Warnings
            <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
            BATON ROUGE (May 16, 2011) - Today, Governor Jindal held a Unified Command Group meeting with state and federal officials on the impacts of the rising Miss. River. Following the meeting, the Governor held a press conference to give an update on state efforts to combat river flooding, including the sinking of a barge in St. Mary Parish, which the Governor will visit today, aimed at preventing backwater flooding.

            Governor Jindal said, "The crests have been lowered modestly in a number of places in Louisiana, but there is still a significant amount of water coming our way. Even with the lower projections, we know this water will impact households and families and that is why the National Guard and local officials are working around the clock to keep our people safe. I want to caution citizens to listen closely to your local officials. Pay attention to warnings and any voluntary or mandatory evacuation notices if you live in the parts of the spillway that is projected to be impacted."


            MORGANZA SPILLWAY

            The Governor said the Morganza floodway has 125 gates, of which the Corps said 11 are now open to allow water to flow into the spillway. The Corps reports that the water is not rising as quickly in the Spillway as they expected because their projections used 1973 data, which is not specifically geared to this exact situation, and because of drought conditions absorbing much of the water, which were not factored into their projections. The Corps also updated their projection maps to account for not operating at as high of a capacity than they initially anticipated.

            Troopers, Guardsmen and LDWF agents are patrolling the Morganza Spillway area and keeping motorists from obstructing the roadway and shoulders. State Police and the Coast Guard are monitoring those still in the Spillway area through overflights using FLIR - an imaging technology that senses infrared radiation. FLIR technology detects heat to create a "picture" assembled for video output and can help pilots detect warm objects against a cold background when it is dark. LSP also uses this for search and rescue missions of missing children. State Police has three helicopters with this technology. State Police is also using Night Vision Goggles in their flights - an optical instrument that collects tiny amounts of light, to identify anyone who is in potential impact areas.

            Over the weekend, DOTD began closures of roads that are affected by the Morganza Spillway opening. Travelers should visit the 511la.org site to receive the latest information on road conditions around the spillway and across the state. DOTD does not expect any additional closures of La. 1 over the Morganza Spillway as the Corp continues to open bays.

            GOHSEP activated its First Call emergency notification system to notify people of the Morganza opening. GOHSEP used First Call to place targeted phone calls to individual homes and businesses within the Morganza Spillway.

            The Governor also said that yesterday, St Landry's Parish President announced a mandatory evacuation for areas South of Hwy 190, inside the Atchafalaya Basin - including the Three Mile Lake area. The following parishes have voluntary evacuations in progress: St. Martin, Iberia, and St. Mary. The Village of Delta in Madison parish is considering evacuation because of its proximity to the Mississippi River.


            FLOOD FIGHTING

            In support of State and Parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has approximately 1,100 guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. Currently, LANG has deployed National Guard Liaison teams to 19 affected parishes.

            DOTD has 351 staff members and 276 trucks and equipment actively deployed in flood prevention efforts. To date, DOTD has delivered 65,806 sandbags, and provided 28,550 linear feet of HESCO baskets across the state in support of its flood protection efforts.

            Northeast Louisiana: In support of Parishes in Northeast Louisiana, Guardsmen continue to support parishes and the 5th Levee District's efforts to monitor levees, distribute equipment and supplies, and to fortify levees in East Carroll, Madison, Tensas, and Concordia Parishes. Guardsmen are also assessing areas in LaSalle, Catahoula, and Avoyelles parishes in preparation for potential backwater flooding.
            • Yesterday, Louisiana Guardsmen assisted in the identification of 19 new Sand or Pin Boils in Northeast Louisiana. Guardsmen have now located and flagged approximately 119 Sand or Pin Boils to date: 60 in Concordia Parish, 52 in East Carroll Parish, 5 in Tensas Parish, and 2 in Madison Parish.
            • In response to an overnight request from Concordia Parish, LANG Aviation assets are conducting sling-load operations to fortify and contain a leak in the HESCO barrier and contain Sand Boils between the river and Vidalia Convention Center.
            • In East Carroll Parish: Sunday, 8,400 sand bags were delivered to Jimmy Davis Landing and Henderson Landing in East Carroll Parish in support of levee fortification efforts. To date, in East Carroll Parish alone, DOTD has hauled more than 10,000 cubic yards of sand.
            Assumption Parish: Yesterday, National Guard teams completed assessments of the project areas in Pierre Part and Bayou L'ourse in conjunction with Parish officials. Thus far, the Guard has constructed over 6,850 feet of Tiger Dams. Today, Guard teams will continue constructing and installing operations on this project (Total project is 8,500 LF). The Guard anticipates completion of this project by tomorrow. DOTD is close to completing the flood protection barrier needed along La. 663 in Assumption Parish. To date, DOTD has delivered 182 cubic yards of sand and has installed a total of 570 linear feet of HESCO baskets. Only 600 linear feet of baskets will be needed to complete the barrier and ensure flood waters do not inundate La. 663 or nearby neighborhoods.

            St. Landry Parish: Yesterday in Krotz Springs, Guardsmen continued assisting the parish and DOTD by installing 1,500 feet of HESCO and Super Sand Bags (RIBS). To date, the Guard has constructed and installed 2,240LF on this 10,000 LF project.
            • Today, Guardsmen will continue installation of HESCO and Super Sand Bags on this project and expect to be done by tomorrow.
            • National Guard teams are also assisting the Sheriff's office in conducting levee security operations.
            • In an effort to ensure Krotz Spring has a stable flood protection barrier before waters reach the area, DOTD leased a specialized sand machine called the CASTR30 or sand-slinger to the project site on Sunday.
            Terrebonne Parish: In Houma yesterday, National Guard crews assisted the parish in completion of the 2,650 feet of Tiger Tube project around Greenwood Middle School and Bayou Black Elementary School. Today, Guardsman will continue providing patrols on this project in order to keep the barrier secure.

            Ascension Parish: At the Aben worksite near Donaldsonville, National Guard teams are assisting the parish by providing technical assistance on the construction of sand bag berms for the reinforcement of the levee system.

            St. Martin Parish: National Guard Soldiers continue working with the Sheriff's Office to secure evacuated areas.

            East Baton Rouge Parish: National Guard Soldiers are working with the Sheriff's Office and conducting security patrols within the parish in order to secure the levee. DOTD engineers is monitoring River Road Downtown at North Street, Scenic Highway (U.S. 61B) south of U.S. 190, River Road south of Brightside, U.S. 61 near Thompson Creek, and U.S. 190 at the base of the Mississippi River Bridge in East Baton Rouge Parish for seepage issues.


            ST. MARY BARGE PROJECT

            The Governor said the opening of the Morganza Floodway causes waters in the Atchafalaya Basin to rise - and once passing through Morgan City and Berwick, these waters will force water to the east through Bayous Chene, Boeuf and Black, into Lake Palourde and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway -- causing backwater flooding.

            The submersible barge project is designed to reduce the flow of backwater flooding by restricting flows east through Bayou Chene into Lake Palourde and the GIWW. This project will force Atchafalaya Basin waters south and to the southeast into unpopulated areas and wetlands that could benefit from the freshwater. Several hundred feet of sheet pile, three crew boats, three spud barges, four tugs, 17,000 tons of rock/rip rap, 14,000 cubic foot per second pumping capacity and a 500'x120'x30' submersible barge are all being employed as part of this project. Today, all four barges are in place, over 500 feet of sheetpile has been driven. Rocks are now being placed to stabilize and close the sides of the structure. This project gives Amelia, Stephensville, Gibson, Belle River, Pierre Part and many other communities protection in this flood fight.

            The Corps made available 27,000 linear feet of HESCO Baskets to CPRA for the Bayou Boeuf (BUFF) locks in St. Mary Parish. CPRA gave over 6,000 linear feet of this HESCO to the town of Amelia and more than 2,000 feet to Ascension Parish.

            The National Guard is continuing the construction of approximately 25,500 feet of HESCO barrier in order to fortify and elevate levees to prevent backwater flooding in Morgan City and Amelia - under 24-hour operations. Morgan City worksite: Today, National Guard crews continue to conduct maintenance and repairs as needed on the 8,000 feet HESCO barrier emplaced. Amelia worksite: As of this morning, Guard crews completed 5,240 feet of HESCO barrier. (Total Project will be 10,000 feet.) Siracusaville (near Morgan City) worksite: Yesterday, the Guard constructed and installed 495 feet of HESCO barrier and continue their construction today.

            With around the clock operations throughout the weekend, DOTD has now hauled a total of 14,368 cubic yards of sand in support of the construction of a flood protection wall for the town of Amelia in St. Mary Parish. Additionally, DOTD hauled 2,080 cubic yards of dirt in its efforts to support LANG, deployed 20 trucks to haul material to the site and 3 dozers to assist the parish. DOTD is also supplying three excavators to help construct a levee along Avocca Island Road in St. Mary Parish.


            LDWF Update

            Over the weekend, LDWF had a total of three reported bear sightings, due to the rising floodwaters. LDWF has a mobile command unit in Krotz Springs and is operating 24 hours a day with 205 agents, 103 ATVs and 2 amphibious airplanes, in the event residents need assistance or rescue from floodwaters.


            DOC Update

            Phase III of offender evacuations from Angola began this morning (total after this phase will be 3,500 inmates evacuated). In this phase, approximately 1,000 offenders will be evacuated from LSP to Avoyelles Correctional Center (AVC), Dixon Correctional Center (DCI) and Elayn Hunt Correctional Center (EHCC). Probation and Parole agents are providing escort assistance for this operation.

            Eight agents from the Donaldsonville Probation and Parole District began providing service to Assumption Parish this morning through community policing activities which may include patrol duties, providing security for distribution centers, and evacuation assistance. Probation and Parole agents are also supporting the Department's operation by providing 3 agents every 12 hours to man boat patrols to monitor the LSP levee system. DOC worked throughout the weekend by providing 310 offender work crews to support local sandbagging operations in five parishes.


            DEQ Update

            EPA contractors and DEQ personnel participated in the removal of more than 200 hazardous materials containers at a boat launch located on Atchafalaya River at Highway 3172.


            DHH Update

            DHH is monitoring the needs, emergency response plans and evacuations of hospitals and nursing homes. To date, 23 patients have been evacuated from one hospital, and 79 residents have been evacuated from two nursing homes in Concordia Parish. Two additional facilities have notified DHH of plans to evacuate in the next few days – an adult residential care facility in Morgan City and a nursing home in New Roads.

            DHH behavioral health clinics in the impacted areas are reviewing client schedules and taking steps, such as securing computer equipment and patient files in case of flooding of the clinic sites. Residents with behavioral health needs can call their local behavioral health resources if they need assistance. The La. Spirit line was rerouted to the national Oil Spill response line after the BP oil spill. That national line is now taking calls from flood victims in crisis as well. DHH is releasing this contact information today.

            Today, DHH's medical entomologist will begin the necessary steps to monitor the mosquito populations of impacted areas, which begins the process of working with the Centers for Disease Control in case additional assistance, beyond local capacity, is needed for mosquito control. In Assumption Parish: DHH Region 3 Sanitarian Director is working with a local parish police juror and the owner of an oxidation pond in Pierre Part to ensure proper steps are taken regarding the flooding of the pond. In Concordia Parish: DHH is working very closely with the Vidalia Water System, which sandbagged its wells on the riverside of the levee. The water level is about 1 foot from the sandbags for water well #2 and the water is just getting to the base of the sandbags for water well #3.


            DCFS Update

            As of Sunday evening at midnight, no Red Cross or CTN (critical transportation needs) shelters had been opened. DCFS, working with the Red Cross, has 13 primary and secondary shelters ready to open in the Morganza and Atchafalaya areas.

            St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary, Iberville, Assumption and Terrebonne each have two shelters ready to open; Iberia parish has one. DCFS has 52 staff on standby to be deployed to shelters when they open.

            DCFS staged a 16-head shower trailer with eight sinks to the staging site in St. Martinville, as well as 67 toilets and 26 sinks to potential shelters in St. Martin, St. Landry, St. Mary, Assumption, and Terrebonne. Toilets and sinks for Iberia and Iberville parishes are on standby for rapid deployment upon request from parish.


            ###

            "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
            -Nelson Mandela

            Comment


            • #7
              Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Governor Jindal Press Conference May 17, 2011 - Gov. Jindal: Parishes Estimate More than 3,000 People Evacuated From Spillway Area Already, Residents Should Continue to Heed Local Warnings

              PRESS RELEASE
              <!-- Title of the Press Release -->Gov. Jindal: Parishes Estimate More than 3,000 People Evacuated From Spillway Area Already, Residents Should Continue to Heed Local Warnings
              <!-- START of Press Release text -->
              <!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
              BATON ROUGE (May 17, 2011) - Governor Jindal held a UCG meeting today with state and federal officials, followed by a press conference where he cautioned residents to stay in tune to their local leaders, even as they continue to prepare for the impact of floodwaters.

              Governor Jindal said, "According to the Corps of Engineers, 15 gates of the Morganza Floodway are now open. The Corps tells us that in Baton Rouge, we can expect high river levels for up to three weeks. One piece of improved news is that they anticipate less backwater flooding in the lower areas of Louisiana. The Corps predicts this high water event will set records at Natchez, and at Natchez it will be five feet higher than a previous record. They continue to expect the peek flow to the Spillway on May 22nd. Over the next few days, they expect the water to begin to co-mingle with the Atchafalaya, and it shouldn't reach I-10 until later tonight.

              "The Coast Guard told us today that they have closed the Port Allen alternate route and they continue to work to limit traffic to reduce the amount of wave action on levees."

              The Governor said, "GOHSEP, working with parishes, estimates that a total of 3,349 people have evacuated St. Landry and St. Martin parishes - including the area in St. Landry that is under a mandatory evacuation (that area south of Hwy 190 inside the Atchafalaya Basin). GOHSEP also reported that other parishes along the impacted areas have sent warnings to residents and many residents have self evacuated, including an estimated 280 citizens in Avoyelles, 50 in Catahoula, more than 1,000 in Concordia, around 100 in E. Carroll and Madison Parishes, around 70 in Point Coupee, and a few people in Tensas, Iberville and W. Feliciana also.

              "The PSC told us they estimate that more than 14,000 structures - including residential homes and businesses - could be impacted by flooding from this event. They report that services have been cut off to more than 200 homes in Avoyelles due to high water and nearly 300 homes in Concordia. More than 500 homes in Pointe Coupee have also had their services shut off and around 88 businesses. About 100 structures are also already impacted and disconnected in Tensas and W. Feliciana Parishes."

              Concerning the impact of the Spillway opening on wildlife, the Governor said, "LDWF biologists are monitoring the west Morganza floodway levee reported approximately 18 deer and one coyote observed on the levee. Two dead deer were found near fences, and they believe the cause of death believed is related to being caught in the fence. LDWF says deer disturbed by vehicles will run parallel to the levee and sometimes run into the livestock fences that are perpendicular to the levee. LDWF reported an instance of a deer emerging exhausted from the water and then lying down beside LA Hwy. 1 at Morganza. Wildlife officials caution residents to leave wildlife alone so they can recover and do not panic, which will lessen their chances for survival.

              "DOTD placed wildlife crossing signs to remind motorists that displaced animals may cross the roadways surrounding the Morganza Spillway and to drive with caution. Additionally, State Police have initiated short-term closures of La. 1 over the Morganza Spillway as the Corp opens and closes bays. These closures are estimated to last 10 - 15 minutes."


              FLOOD FIGHTING UPDATE

              Governor Jindal said, in support of State and Parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has approximately 1,150 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. LANG has deployed National Guard Liaison Teams to 19 affected parishes in order to coordinate National Guard support to Parish efforts.


              Northeast Louisiana: National Guardsmen continue to support parishes and the 5th Levee District's efforts to monitor levees, distribute equipment and supplies, and to fortify levees in East Carroll, Madison, Tensas, and Concordia Parishes. Guardsmen are also assessing areas in LaSalle, Catahoula, and Avoyelles Parishes in preparation for potential backwater flooding.
              • The sandboil in the interior wall of the HESCO baskets at the Vidalia Convention Center has now been plugged.
              • Yesterday, Guardsmen assisted in the identification of eight new sand or pin boils in Northeast Louisiana. Guardsmen have now located and flagged 127 sand or pin boils to date: 64 in Concordia Parish, 53 in East Carroll Parish, 7 in Tensas Parish, and 3 in Madison Parish.
              • DOTD leased an amphibious vehicle for the Fifth Louisiana Levee District in East Carroll, Madison, Tensas, Franklin, and Concordia parishes to help in transporting emergency personnel and sandbags to address sand boils in seepage areas. Swamp or marsh buggies are specifically designed to travel through mud, swampland and other harsh terrains specifically like the flooded marshy areas in the Fifth Louisiana Levee District.
              Assumption Parish: Yesterday, Louisiana National Guard teams assisted the parish with construction of 800 feet of Tiger Dam in the Pierre Part and Bayou L'Ourse area. Thus far, the Guard has constructed over 7,650 feet of Tiger Dam. Today, Guard teams will continue constructing and installing operations on this project. The total project is 9,350 feet, with an anticipated completion of this project on May 18. DOTD completed the flood protection barrier needed along La. 663 in Assumption Parish. To complete the barrier ensuring floodwaters do not inundate La. 663 or nearby neighborhoods, DOTD delivered 189 cubic yards of sand and installed a total of 600 linear feet of HESCO baskets.

              St. Landry Parish: Yesterday in Krotz Springs, National Guardsmen continued assisting the Parish and DOTD by installing 3,800 feet of HESCO barrier. To date, the Guard has constructed and installed 9,340 feet on this 9,730 feet project.
              • Today, Guardsmen continue installation of HESCO barrier on this project and have an estimated completion date of May 17.
              • Guard teams are also assisting the Sheriff's office in conducting levee security operations.
              • DOTD completed the 4,772 cubic yards of reclaimed asphalt pavement (RAP) base in Krotz Springs, St. Landry Parish.
              • In addition, DOTD utilized 75 trucks and over 115 staff members to haul RAP to build a base and fill material for placement in HESCOs and RIBS. The RIBS along with HESCO baskets will be placed on top of the newly laid RAP base to construct a barrier wall to protect residents and businesses from floodwaters. DOTD has procured 9,000 linear feet of the rapid installation barrier system (RIBS) and leased the CASTR30 sand-slinger to be utilized in the continued construction of a flood protection barrier. RIBS are quick assemble, heavy-duty triangular sand bags.
              St. Mary Parish: The Guard is working 24-hour operations on the construction of approximately 25,500 feet of HESCO barrier in order to fortify and elevate levees to prevent backwater flooding in Morgan City and Amelia.
              • Morgan City worksite: Today, National Guard crews continue to conduct maintenance and repairs as needed on the 8,000 feet HESCO barrier emplaced.
              • Amelia worksite: As of this morning, Guard crews completed 9,450 feet of HESCO barrier of the 10,000-foot project. Today, the Guard continues the construction and installation of this protection. DOTD hauled an additional 5,089 cubic yards of dirt yesterday which brings the total haul to date to 19,457 cubic yards in support of the construction of a flood protection wall for the town of Amelia in St. Mary Parish. This project should be completed today.
              • Siracusaville (near Morgan City) worksite: LANG has constructed and installed approximately 1,300 feet of HESCO barrier and today the Guard will continue installation of the 7,500 feet of HESCO barrier required to support Parish flood fighting efforts.
              • Additionally, DOTD has hauled 2,080 cubic yards of sand in its efforts to support LANG, provided 4,000 linear feet of HESCO baskets, deployed 20 trucks to haul material to the site and 3 dozers to assist the parish in raising existing levees to an appropriate flood protection height.
              • DOTD began excavation work, which helped construct approximately ? mile of a levee along Avocca Island Road in St. Mary Parish.
              St. Martin Parish: DOTD is developing a plan to install approximately two miles of HESCOs along La. 70, north of Stephensville, in an effort to keep the roadway open during the pending flood event. DOTD will fortify both sides of a 1 mile stretch of roadway on La. 70 in St. Martin Parish. National Guard Soldiers continue conducting security patrols within the parish in order to secure evacuated areas, with the Sheriff's Office.

              Terrebonne Parish: Houma worksite: Today, National Guard crews will continue providing over watch security of the completed Tiger Tube installation around Greenwood Middle School and Bayou Black Elementary School. The Tiger Tubes were completed yesterday. At the Bayou Black worksite, National Guard crews yesterday worked with parish officials to access the location of the Tiger Tube installation in North Bayou Black Area to suppress backwater flooding. Today, crews will begin the installation of a new 10,000-feet Tiger Dam project.

              Ascension Parish: At the Aben worksite near Donaldsonville yesterday, the parish completed construction of sand bag berms and HESCO barriers to reinforce the levee system. The National Guard assisted the parish by providing technical support and equipment to construct 3,150 feet of barrier to protect the community of Aben. This project is now complete.

              East Baton Rouge: National Guard Soldiers are augmenting the Sheriff's Office and conducting security patrols within the Parish in order to secure the levee.
              • DOTD is using three pumps to remove water from the outside lanes on River Road in Downtown Baton Rouge at North Street. The outside lanes are closed Northbound and Southbound from North Third Street to State Capitol Drive to remove water. DOTD crews will continue to fight the river water seepage in an effort to maintain traffic on the roadway.
              • DOTD engineers are continuing to monitor several places throughout the area related to seepage issues on its roadways; specifically, Scenic Highway (U.S. 61B) south of U.S. 190, River Road south of Brightside, U.S. 61 near Thompson Creek, and U.S. 190 at the base of the Mississippi River Bridge in East Baton Rouge Parish. Although water may be visible from the roadway, the routes remain passable at this time.
              LDWF Update

              LDWF deployed 16 agents and boats to help reinforce the sandbag and HESCO basket levee surrounding the Vidalia Convention Center. Agents and boats are being used to transport Concordia Parish Correctional Facility prisoners and sandbags to the area. LDWF has a Mobile Command Unit in Krotz Springs operating 24 hours a day along with 205 agents, 103 ATVs, and two amphibious airplanes.

              LDWF reports there have now been four bear sightings due to the rising floodwaters. Four wildlife management areas are now closed: Attakapas, Grassy Lake, Sherburne, Three Rivers.


              DOTD Update

              DOTD has 369 staff members and 295 trucks and equipment actively deployed in flood prevention efforts. To date, DOTD has delivered 79,006 sandbags.


              DOC Update

              Angola evacuations were completed yesterday and they do not anticipate any other evacuations at this time.

              Offenders and officers from state correctional facilities will be involved in sandbagging operations Tuesday in Assumption and Iberville parishes. About 110 offenders from the transitional Work Programs will participate in sandbagging operations Tuesday in West Baton Rouge, Pointe Coupee and Terrebonne parishes. An additional 27 DOC offenders will be transferred to West Baton Rouge Transitional Work Program Tuesday to supplement ongoing efforts.

              Probation and Parole officers are assisting the Assumption Parish Sheriff's Office with community policing efforts. Additionally, the officers were tasked with providing perimeter security to Dixon Correctional Institute on a 24/7 basis.


              DEQ Update

              The water from the Atchafalaya River is approaching the Cabot Corporation tank terminal at Krotz Springs, St. Landry Parish. DEQ contacted Cabot and they are monitoring the water. The Alon Refinery behind it has a higher levee around it.

              Dune Operating's Bateman Lake facility in St. Mary Parish, located south of Berwick on the west side of Bateman Lake, is flooding. They filled the tanks with river water so that they would not lose the tanks. Also, the Louisiana Energy and Environment's Bateman Lake facility on west side of Sweetbay Lake is flooded. The facility is shut down. They also filled the tanks with river water so that they would not lose the tanks. DEQ reports that businesses with nuclear sources in the expected flood zone are being contacted to ensure that they are making plans to secure these sources in the event that their facilities are flooded, as required by permit.


              DHH Update

              DHH is working closely with nursing homes and hospitals in the impacted areas to monitor needs, emergency response plans and evacuations. So far, 23 patients have been evacuated from one hospital, and 79 residents have been evacuated from two nursing homes, both in Concordia Parish. An adult residential care facility in St. Mary Parish evacuated seven residents Monday and plans to evacuate 38 more by the end of the week. The adult residential care facility, Maison Jardin, in Morgan City reports backwater is still rising and could be a threat for mild flooding. The facility is planning for 24 residents to evacuate with family by Thursday and 14 to evacuate to the Gardens Assisted Living facility in Lake Charles by Friday.

              DHH and Louisiana Poison Control are working with hospitals across the state to ensure there is enough anti-venom available to respond to an anticipated increase in snake bites that often occurs during and after flooding. Hospitals in affected areas should have 12 vials of CroFab antivenom, which works on all native snakes in the state except the coral snake, which responds to a different anti-venom. Most snakebites do not require anti-venom, and there are no concerns about supply at this time for those that do.


              COASTAL Update

              OCPR purchased 21,500 linear feet of tiger tubes to flood fight in the towns of Baldwin and the Gibson area - 4,000 linear feet are going to Baldwin and 17,500 are going to Terrebonne Parish to protect Gibson.


              DCFS Update

              There are no shelters or ARC staging areas open at this time. DCFS contractors have delivered all resources to shelters, including 67 toilets, 34 sinks and one shower unit. DCFS is coordinating with ARC to ensure resources are available either through the Southern Baptist Convention or the agency.


              GOHSEP Update

              At the request of GOHSEP, FEMA Region VI deployed teams to do preliminary damage assessments on personal property for IA, public assistance teams to do preliminary damage assessments on public property, and the Civil Air Patrol, which was tasked by FEMA to provide video and photo support.


              DNR Update

              DNR reports that 116 out of 124 or 92% of the producing wells located within the Atchafalaya basin have been reported shut-in. The total estimated production capacity of the inundation area (including the Basin) is 252.6 MMcf/day of gas and 19,278 bbl/day of oil and condensate.


              Revenue Update

              LDR will grant a 30-day filing extension for tax returns due May 15-31 on a case-by-case basis for taxpayers who: evacuated as the result of a mandatory order; engaged in preventative flood protection measures for homes or property located in an area projected to flood as a result of the opening of a spillway; or suffered damage to a home or property as a result of flooding on a date in which a return was due.


              ###

              "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
              -Nelson Mandela

              Comment


              • #8
                Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 19, 2011 - State Continues Flood Preparation Efforts, Monitoring Wildlife Impacts

                PRESS RELEASE
                <!-- Title of the Press Release -->
                State Continues Flood Preparation Efforts, Monitoring Wildlife Impacts
                <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
                BATON ROUGE (May 19, 2011) - State agencies continue their efforts to fight and prepare for flooding in communities across Louisiana. Updates from individual agencies are below.


                PARISH EVACUATIONS

                On Wednesday, St. Martin parish issued a mandatory evacuation order for Butte LaRose and Happy Town, effective Saturday at 8 a.m. The parish estimates 1,330 people already evacuated from the area. In St. Landry parish, areas in Krotz Springs have been under mandatory evacuation order and the parish has estimated 2,019 people evacuated.

                Louisiana State Police is coordinating with St. Martin Parish Sheriff's Office for patrol and road closure points leading up to the mandatory evacuations in Butte La Rose, Happy Town, and Sherburne Wildlife Management Area Saturday morning.


                FLOOD FIGHTING EFFORTS

                The Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority reports that one million sandbags have been distributed across Louisiana.

                To date, DOTD has delivered 129,421 sandbags, 26,914 cubic yards of sand, 20,713 cubic yards of RAP, and 6,894 cubic yard of dirt/fill across the state in support of flood protection efforts.

                In support of State and Parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has approximately 1,150 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. The Louisiana National Guard has identified 16 new Sand or Pin Boils in northeast Louisiana. Guardsmen have located and flagged 179 Sand or Pin Boils to date: 72 in East Carroll Parish, 3 in Madison Parish, 35 in Tensas Parish and 69 in Concordia Parish.

                Morganza Spillway
                • DOTD granted an emergency permit allowing MCI to place its cables across state bridges along U.S. 190 as a precaution in case its underground network system is impacted by the flood waters in the Morganza Spillway. This will help to ensure continued coverage for MCI's customers in the flood zone.
                • DOTD hauled an additional 148 cubic yards of sand in stabilization efforts on the south Morganza Floodway guide levee. To date, DOTD has hauled 1,378 cubic yards of sand to help fight the seepage that is starting to occur in this area.
                • DOTD will provide traffic control for the Corps as they measure flow volumes on the US 190 Morganza Floodway Bridge. The Corps will continue to need periodic lane closures every day for the next 2 weeks to perform this function to measure flow entering the spillway at US 190.
                Assumption Parish
                • DOTD completed a flood protection barrier along La. 70 in low areas in Assumption Parish, approximately 5 miles north of Pierre Part. DOTD hauled and placed approximately 500 linear feet of HESCO baskets and 151 supersacks to complete this project.
                • DOTD completed an additional flood protection barrier along La. 663 in Assumption Parish by installing 100 linear feet of HESCO baskets.
                St. Mary Parish
                • The National Guard completed the 8,064 LF of HESCO barrier in Morgan City.
                • As of this morning, National Guard crews completed 10,000 LF of HESCO barrier in Amelia. Yesterday, the National Guard completed the installation of 7,500 LF of HESCO barrier in Siracusaville.
                • In support of parish law enforcement, the LANG is providing 30 personnel with 6 vehicles to establish and maintain traffic control points at 6 boat rams along the levee.
                Tensas Parish
                • DOTD is in the process of hauling 5,500 cubic yards of sand to be bagged and then hauled to Tensas Parish for placement at multiple sand boil sites.
                Terrebonne Parish
                • Yesterday, National Guard crews began construction and installation of Tiger Dams in the North Bayou Black area and completed 8,000 LF of the total 10,000 LF project. This project is designed to suppress backwater flooding. Today, Guard crews will continue the installation on this project and expect to complete it today.
                West Baton Rouge
                • Yesterday, LANG provided an all-terrain forklift vehicle to assist the West Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office's sandbagging operation. This forklift will remain on site until mission completion.
                PROTECTING WILDLIFE

                Because of rising floodwaters, many animals have been displaced from their normal habitats. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has 205 enforcement agents and 27 wildlife staff on duty and they staged a Mobile Command Unit in Krotz Springs, in addition to deploying 103 all terrain vehicles and two amphibious airplanes.

                LDWF continues to track and respond to reports of wildlife as necessary. In total, there have been eight reported bear sightings, including two in an area where bears typically are not found. The Louisiana Black Bear remains on the threatened and endangered species list. For assistance with black bears that may be forced into populated areas by flood waters, LDWF asks the public call 1-800-442-2511 toll free.

                Deer continue to cross Highway 190 where it intersects with the protection levee in Lottie. Louisiana State Police, working with the Department of Transportation and Development, reduced the speed limit in this area to 45 MPH because of deer crossing. In addition, alligators and a large numbers of wild turkeys have been observed on the levee in Tensas Parish.

                For assistance with these, or any other wildlife species, that endanger human health or safety, call the following LDWF field offices at:
                • Baton Rouge 225-765-2800
                • Hammond 985-543-4777
                • Monroe 318-343-4044
                • New Iberia 337-373-0032
                • Opelousas 337-948-0255
                • Pineville 318-487-5885
                Department of Children and Family Services
                • DCFS confirmed there is one independent shelter in the Palmetto area in St. Landry Parish being run by a local church. As of noon, Wednesday, May 18, there are 14 people in the shelter. Red Cross is in contact with the shelter and offered resources, but the shelter has not requested state assistance.
                • Currently, no Red Cross or state shelters have opened.
                Department of Corrections
                • DOC offenders have provided the labor to fill approximately 219,000 sandbags to date. Sandbagging operations will continue Thursday in Iberville Parish (Elayn Hunt Correctional Center supporting with 12 offenders and two officers) parish. J. Levy Dabadie Correctional Center is sending 20 offenders and two officers to assist with sandbagging/sandboil operations in Tensas parish (Newellton).
                • 137 DOC offenders from Transitional Work Programs will participate in sandbagging operations on Thursday in West Baton Rouge, Pointe Coupee and Terrebonne parishes.
                Department of Education

                Three schools have closed for the remainder of the school year: Stephensville Elementary in St. Martin, the Louisiana School for the Deaf and the Louisiana School for the Visually Impaired, which are both only miles from the levee in Baton Rouge.


                "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                -Nelson Mandela

                Comment


                • #9
                  Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 23, 2011 - State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts

                  PRESS RELEASE
                  <!-- Title of the Press Release -->State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts
                  <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
                  BATON ROUGE (May 23, 2011) - State agencies continue their efforts to fight and prepare for flooding in communities across Louisiana. Updates from individual agencies are below.


                  PARISH EVACUATIONS

                  In St. Landry parish, officials lifted a mandatory evacuation order for residents living South of Hwy. 190, the Three Mile Lake area and North Wilderness Road area. This area will remain under voluntary evacuation until further notice. St. Landry has a mandatory evacuation order for livestock and residents living on the east side of the levee. St. Martin parish issued a mandatory evacuation for Happy Town and Sherburne Wildlife Management areas Saturday at 8 a.m. However, the mandatory evacuation for the Butte La Rose area has been moved to noon on Tuesday.


                  FLOOD FIGHTING EFFORTS

                  In support of state and parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has approximately 1,150 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. To support future operations, National Guard Soldiers transported 351,000 sandbags from Jackson Barracks in New Orleans to Camp Villere in Slidell on Saturday.

                  Yesterday, Louisiana Guardsmen assisted in the identification of eight new sand boils in northeast Louisiana. Guardsmen have now located and flagged 189 pin boils to date: 77 in East Carroll, 5 in Madison, 35 in Tensas, and 72 in Concordia.

                  To date, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development has delivered 38,398 cubic yards of sand, 40,263 cubic yards of dirt and 48,050 linear feet of HESCO baskets across the state in support of flood protection efforts.

                  Morganza Spillway
                  • DOTD hauled an additional 18 cubic yards of sand in stabilization efforts on the south Morganza Floodway guide levee. To date, DOTD has hauled 1,516 cubic yards of sand to help fight the seepage that is starting to occur in this area.
                  • In Iberville Parish, DOTD closed the on and off ramps to La. 975 from I-10 due to high water from the Morganza Spillway. The closure will last until the water subsides.
                  St. Martin Parish
                  • DOTD completed the installation of approximately 1.8 miles or 4,850 linear feet of HESCO baskets along La. 70, north of Stephensville, in an effort to keep the roadway open during the pending flood event in St. Martin Parish.
                  St. Mary Parish
                  • DOTD hauled and utilized 33,369 cubic yards of dirt to construct 16,495 linear feet of levees and 2,080 cubic yards of sand to fill HESCO baskets in Amelia. Additionally, DOTD crews plugged two cross drain pipes and one box culvert on La. 182 in Amelia to help minimize flooding in the area.
                  • Morgan City HESCO worksite: National Guard teams continue to improve and fortify the existing 8,064 LF of HESCO barrier. To date, the Guard has covered the HESCO with 7,857 LF of visqueen and expect to finish the remainder today.
                  • Amelia HESCO worksite: National Guard teams continue to improve and fortify the existing 10,000 LF of HESCO barrier. Crews continue to install additional sand bags to the existing wall for additional protection and fortification. To date, National Guard crews have covered 2,000 LF of the HESCO with visqueen.
                  • Siracusaville (near Morgan City) HESCO worksite: The initial installation of 7,500 LF of HESCO barrier is complete. The Guard will continue installing a visqueen cover over this barrier and have completed 5,600 LF to date. Today, the Guard will continue installing visqueen as well as improving this site by installing HESCOs perpendicular to the existing wall for additional protection and fortification.
                  • Avoca Road (near Amelia): In support of an additional request by the parish, crews completed the installation of 8,900 LF of visqueen on the top of an existing levee. Over the weekend, parish officials accessed the area and requested installation of 1,200 LF of HESCO barrier to extend the existing levee. On Saturday, National Guard crews completed 300 LF of HESCO but rising water prevented crews from continuing to access the worksite due to the shutdown of the cable ferry. The Corps of Engineers is providing a barge to allow the parish to access and complete the project.
                  Terrebonne Parish
                  • Bayou Black worksite: Through the weekend, National Guard crews continued to install Tiger Dams in the North Bayou Black area. To date, Guard crews installed 15,650 LF of Tiger Dams in order to prevent backwater flooding. Today, National Guard teams will continue to maintain and repair existing Tiger Dams as required.
                  Pointe Coupee
                  • National Guard teams continue assisting the Pointe Coupee Sheriff's Office by providing 15 Security officers and seven vehicles. Guard teams will continue conducting security patrols covering the Morganza Spillway guide levees and the Mississippi and Atchafalaya River levees.
                  West Baton Rouge
                  • Yesterday, the Louisiana National Guard provided an all-terrain forklift vehicle to assist the West Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office's sandbagging operation.
                  • To support the West Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office sandbagging operation, Guardsmen are transporting pallets from Amelia to Port Allen. Yesterday, Guard crews transported 500 pallets and today they will transport an additional 500 pallets.
                  • DOTD hauled 102 cubic yards of sand to the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office for sandbagging operations. This brings the total to 270 cubic yards of sand.

                  PROTECTING WILDLIFE

                  Because of rising floodwaters, many animals have been displaced from their normal habitats. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has 205 enforcement agents and 15 wildlife staff on duty and they staged a Mobile Command Unit in Krotz Springs, in addition to deploying 103 all terrain vehicles and two amphibious airplanes.

                  LDWF continues to track and respond to reports of wildlife as necessary. In total, there have been fourteen reported bear sightings. The Louisiana Black Bear remains on the threatened and endangered species list. For assistance with black bears that may be forced into populated areas by flood waters, LDWF asks the public call 1-800-442-2511 toll free.

                  For assistance with these, or any other wildlife species, that endanger human health or safety, call the following LDWF field offices at:
                  • Baton Rouge 225-765-2800
                  • Hammond 985-543-4777
                  • Monroe 318-343-4044
                  • New Iberia 337-373-0032
                  • Opelousas 337-948-0255
                  • Pineville 318-487-5885
                  Department of Transportation and Development
                  • CN Railroad informed DOTD that its railroad bridge over the Bonnet Carrie Spillway was damaged by debris last night. The railroad is planning emergency repairs, which are estimated to last 48 hours. Since the railroad bridge parallels the state's I-10 bridge, DOTD engineers conducted an inspection of the I-10 bridge and found no damage. DOTD will continue to monitor the area in the path of the spillway to ensure the state's bridge remains safe for motorists. Additionally, DOTD will review and approve CN Railroad's repair plans and monitor the repair construction.
                  • This morning in Avoyelles Parish, four barges were adrift in the Atchafalaya River Basin and became **** up on the railroad bridge upstream from the La. 1 Simmesport Bridge. DOTD had inspectors on the scene immediately and the State Police closed the bridge to traffic intermittently. The sheriff's office coordinated a tug that secured the loose barges. None of the barges hit the La. 1 Bridge. The closure was precautionary and La. 1 re-opened within 1 ? hours of the initial closure.

                  Department of Corrections
                  • The DOC has provided offender labor to fill approximately 396,000 sandbags to date.

                  Department of Wildlife and Fisheries
                  • Agents made 513 contacts and gave 84 verbal warnings while on levee patrol since Friday (05-20) afternoon.
                  • Rising water in Avoyelles Parish - agents patrolled by boat and vehicle Little River, Bayou Jeansonne, Lake St. Agnes, Long Fork and Spring Bayou. Water is entering yards and some camps with a lot of upstream flow. Water at Lake Long has risen approximately two feet since Friday. Camps at Grand Lake are flooded. Camps along Lake Long Road stand to be flooded in next few days. Bayou Natchitoches road near Bordelonville has risen approximately two feet since Friday. Boggie Bayou at Spring Bayou WMA has come up approximately three inches since Friday and camps and homes are in danger of flooding in the next few days.
                  • Morgan City - flooding reported on Front Street which is outside the protection levees. Currently, Morgan City is at 8.5 feet with an expected crest of 11 feet on May 27.
                  • Sherburne WMA (Pointe Coupee/St. Martin/Iberville Parishes): Four feet of water observed in Sherburne HQ from Morganza spillway waters. The bunkhouse on South Farm is flooded.
                  http://emergency.louisiana.gov/Relea...ightingEfforts
                  "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                  -Nelson Mandela

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 24, 2011 - State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts

                    PRESS RELEASE
                    <!-- Title of the Press Release -->State Agencies Continue Flood Fighting Efforts, Support Local Government Needs
                    <!-- START of Press Release text -->
                    <!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->BATON ROUGE (May 24, 2011) - State agencies continue their efforts to fight and prepare for flooding in communities across Louisiana. Updates from individual agencies are below.


                    FLOOD FIGHTING EFFORTS

                    In support of State and Parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has approximately 1,150 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency. Yesterday, Louisiana Guardsmen assisted in the identification of five new Sand or Pin Boils in northeast Louisiana. Guardsmen have now located and flagged 193 Sand or Pin Boils to date: 77 in East Carroll, nine in Madison, 35 in Tensas and 72 in Concordia.

                    To date, DOTD has delivered 39,289 cubic yards of sand, 40,263 cubic yards of dirt, 20,713 cubic yards of RAP and 234,900 sandbags across the state in support of flood protection efforts. This represents more than 10,000 truckloads of material (sand/dirt) that could fill approximately 30 Olympic-sized swimming pools and enough sandbags to build a one foot levee for approximately nine miles.


                    St. Martin Parish
                    • DOTD utilized 10 dump trucks to haul sand to LaRose in Lafourche Parish.
                    St. Mary Parish
                    • National Guard teams in Morgan City continue to improve and fortify the existing 8,340 linear feet of HESCO barrier. Yesterday, the Guard completed covering the HESCO wall with visqueen and securing with sandbags. Guard Engineer crews remain on site to maintain and fortify the work site.
                    • National Guard teams in Amelia continue to improve and fortify the existing 10,000 linear feet of HESCO barrier. Yesterday, Guardsmen completed covering the HESCO wall with visqueen and securing with sandbags. Engineer crews remain on site to maintain and fortify the work site.
                    • In Siracusaville the initial installation of 7,500 linear feet of HESCO barrier is complete. Yesterday, the Guard completed covering the HESCO wall with visqueen and securing with sandbags. Engineer crews remain on site to maintain and fortify the work site.
                    • At Avoca Road, near Amerlia, Guard crews completed the installation of 8,900 linear feet of visqueen to protect an existing levee and also completed 400 linear feet of HESCO wall to extend the levee protection. To support parish efforts to add additional protection to the levee, Guardsmen transported 202 super sand bags to the barge site established by the Corps of Engineers.
                    East Carroll and Madison Parish
                    • To date, DOTD has hauled from Morehouse Parish 12,300 cubic yards of sand to East Carroll (10,040 cys) and Madison (2,261 cys) parishes. DOTD has hauled approximately 213,900 sandbags to flood protection efforts across the affected northern parishes that line the Mississippi River (Tensas and East Carroll parishes).
                    Bonnet Carre Spillway
                    • After the CN Railroad bridge over the Bonnet Carre Spillway was damaged by debris Sunday, DOTD engineers are conducting routine inspections of the I-10 bridge which runs parallel to the rail bridge to ensure it remains safe for motorist. The railroad is planning emergency repairs, which are estimated to last 48 hours. DOTD has reviewed and approved CN Railroad's repair plans and will monitor the repair construction.
                    East Baton Rouge Parish
                    • DOTD has completely closed all lanes of River Road (La. 327) a half mile south of Brightside Drive for a distance of less than a mile. The closure is expected to last for the duration of the high water event. DOTD state detour routes are Skip Bertman Drive on the northern end and Gardere Lane on the southern end of the closure. The total closure of River Road is necessary to allow crews from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority, the Department of Transportation and Development and the Pontchartrain Levee District to continue monitoring work, which is being coordinated with the City of Baton Rouge and the East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. Crews will place additional sand bags on the levee, install seepage monitors and perform levee survey work. This work is being performed as a precautionary measure and to collect survey data. The Duncan Point area is a known seepage area and these actions will ensure the continued performance of the protection system. There is no immediate threat of flooding or levee performance.
                    West Baton Rouge Parish
                    • To support the West Baton Rouge Sheriff's Office sandbagging operation, yesterday Guardsmen transported the remaining 200 empty pallets of the total 1,000 pallets from Amelia to Port Allen.
                    • DOTD hauled 169 cubic yards of sand to the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office for sandbagging operations. This brings the total to 337 cubic yards of sand. Additionally, DOTD hauled approximately 21,000 sandbags from West Baton Rouge Parish in flood fortification efforts across the state, including operations in Stephensville, Butte LaRose and Amelia.
                    PROTECTING WILDLIFE

                    Because of rising floodwaters, many animals have been displaced from their normal habitats. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has 205 enforcement agents and 26 wildlife staff on duty and they staged a Mobile Command Unit in Krotz Springs, in addition to deploying 103 all terrain vehicles and two amphibious airplanes.

                    LDWF continues to track and respond to reports of wildlife as necessary. In total, there have been 14 reported bear sightings. The Louisiana Black Bear remains on the threatened and endangered species list. For assistance with black bears that may be forced into populated areas by flood waters, LDWF asks the public call 1-800-442-2511 toll free.

                    For assistance with these, or any other wildlife species, that endanger human health or safety, call the following LDWF field offices at:
                    • Baton Rouge 225-765-2800
                    • Hammond 985-543-4777
                    • Monroe 318-343-4044
                    • New Iberia 337-373-0032
                    • Opelousas 337-948-0255
                    • Pineville 318-487-5885
                    Department of Corrections

                    DOC offender crews have provided the labor to fill 439,000 sandbags so far.

                    Department of Environmental Quality

                    DEQ staff flew over the Atchafalaya Basin from the Atchafalaya River delta to the Morganza spillway monitor the status of 37 oil and gas exploration and production facilities along with all other facilities with large above ground storage tanks, such as tank terminals and refueling terminals, including the refinery located at Krotz Springs.

                    http://emergency.louisiana.gov/Relea...ightingEfforts
                    "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                    -Nelson Mandela

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 26, 2011 - State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts

                      PRESS RELEASE
                      <!-- Title of the Press Release -->
                      State Agency Flood Fighting Continues in Louisiana
                      <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
                      BATON ROUGE (May 26, 2011) - State agencies continue their efforts to fight and prepare for flooding in communities across Louisiana. Updates from individual agencies are below.

                      The Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness completed a field survey of several flood-affected parishes, reporting on Thursday that at least 1,230 structures in 13 parishes have been affected by floodwaters. This includes 24 commercial structures and 1,204 residential structures, including camps. The by-parish figures for flood-affected structures are below. These are preliminary and will be updated as conditions change.
                      • Avoyelles - 25 structures;
                      • Concordia - 203 structures;
                      • East Carroll - 30 structures;
                      • Iberia - 8 structures;
                      • Iberville - 205 structures;
                      • LaSalle - 50 structures;
                      • Madison - 77 structures;
                      • Pointe Coupee - 352 structures;
                      • St. Landry - 3 structures;
                      • St. Martin - 35 structures;
                      • St. Mary - 6 structures;
                      • Tensas - 74 structures;
                      • West Feliciana - 162 structures.

                      FLOOD FIGHTING EFFORTS

                      In support of State and Parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has 1,150 Guardsmen mobilized for this emergency.

                      In support of St. Mary Parish, the Guard is transporting 10,000 LF of Tiger Dam materials today from Lockport in Lafourche Parish to Amelia. The National Guard also is providing aviation support to the Red River Levee District to assess levees and backwater flooding in Avoyelles and St. Landry Parish. Guard aviation crews are also supporting USACE to assess levees in Northeast Louisiana. In Northeast Louisiana, the National Guard continues to support the 5th levee district by performing sandbag hauling missions using 3 rapid-transport systems.

                      To date, DOTD has delivered 39,452 cubic yards of sand, and 276,050 sandbags across the state in support of flood protection efforts.

                      Bonnet Carre Spillway
                      • DOTD closed the right shoulder, westbound and eastbound, on I-10 over the Bonnet Carre Spillway, on Thursday for bridge inspection. DOTD engineers will be evaluating the water flow and its effects on the bridge, including checking for scouring or potential erosion based on force of river water.
                      West Baton Rouge Parish
                      • DOTD hauled 88 cubic yards of sand to the West Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff's Office for sandbagging operations. This brings the total to 454 cubic yards of sand. Additionally, today, DOTD hauled approximately 10,450 sandbags from West Baton Rouge Parish in flood fortification efforts in Amelia. This brings the total hauled to date to 39,650 sandbags from West Baton Rouge across the state, including operations in Stephensville, Butte LaRose and Amelia.
                      East Carroll and Madison Parish
                      • To date, DOTD has hauled from Morehouse Parish 13,200 cubic yards of sand to East Carroll and Madison parishes. DOTD has hauled approximately 236,400 sandbags to flood protection efforts across the affected northern parishes that line the Mississippi River (Tensas, Madison, and East Carroll parishes).
                      Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

                      Because of rising floodwaters, many animals have been displaced from their normal habitats. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has 205 enforcement agents and 26 wildlife staff on duty and they staged a Mobile Command Unit in Krotz Springs, in addition to deploying 103 all terrain vehicles and two amphibious airplanes. From the Arkansas state line to the Concordia Parish line, LDWF enforcement agents made 73 contacts and issued eight verbal warnings while on levee patrol on Wednesday.

                      In St. Martin Parish, LDWF has closed all boat traffic beginning 6 a.m., May 26 for a four-mile long stretch in the Atchafalaya Basin. The closure area is from the Henderson levee on the west side to the Butte La Rose levee on the east side. The width of the closure is from the Interstate 10 Bridge on the south side to a line half a mile north of the bridge on the north side. Agents started patrolling the closure area 24 hours a day with two boats and four agents.

                      The elevated water in the area has put the Entergy high voltage electrical transmission lines at an expected dangerous clearance level of seven feet for boat traffic. In order to avoid de-energizing the lines that would result in loss of electricity to many citizens and the Butte La Rose Welcome Center, LDWF decided to restrict boat traffic.

                      LDWF continues to track and respond to reports of wildlife as necessary. In total, there have been fifteen reported bear sightings. The Louisiana Black Bear remains on the threatened and endangered species list. For assistance with black bears that may be forced into populated areas by flood waters, LDWF asks the public call 1-800-442-2511 toll free.

                      For assistance with these, or any other wildlife species, that endanger human health or safety, call the following LDWF field offices at:
                      • Baton Rouge 225-765-2800
                      • Hammond 985-543-4777
                      • Monroe 318-343-4044
                      • New Iberia 337-373-0032
                      • Opelousas 337-948-0255
                      • Pineville 318-487-5885
                      Department of Corrections

                      DOC offender crews are working sandbagging details in the following parishes: Tensas, Iberville, West Baton Rouge and Assumption. Offender crews have filled/placed more than 516,000 sandbags to date.

                      Department of Health and Hospitals

                      Morgan City Health Care Center completed transferring 18 of its residents with higher care needs to its sister facility, Franklin Health Care Center as of May 25, 2011. The evacuation began Tuesday as a precautionary measure. Sixty residents remain at the Morgan City Health Care Center.

                      http://emergency.louisiana.gov/Relea...htingContinues
                      "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                      -Nelson Mandela

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Louisiana - Mississippi River Flood - Press Release May 31, 2011 - State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts

                        PRESS RELEASE
                        <!-- Title of the Press Release -->Update on State Agency Flood Fighting Efforts in Louisiana
                        <!-- START of Press Release text --><!-- City and Date of the Press Release -->
                        BATON ROUGE (May 31, 2011) - State agencies continue their efforts to fight and prepare for flooding in communities across Louisiana. Updates from individual agencies are below.


                        ENSURING SAFETY OF RESIDENTS

                        As a precautionary measure, the Department of Health and Hospitals' (DHH) Safe Drinking Water Program began conducting weekly assessment samplings for volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) at six Louisiana water systems that use surface water as a source of drinking water.

                        These water systems could be at risk for receiving contaminated flood water from hazardous household chemicals, gasoline cans or other sources. DHH is testing the following water systems: the Town of Ferriday, Morgan City Water System, St. Mary Parish Water and Sewer Commission Number 1, St. Mary Water and Sewer Commission Number 4, St. Mary Parish Waterworks District Number 5 and Houma Water Terrebonne Parish Service Area.

                        If testing shows VOC levels above acceptable drinking water standards, DHH will work with that water system to correct the problem.


                        FLOOD FIGHTING EFFORTS

                        In support of state and parish requirements, the Louisiana National Guard has 1,150 Guardsmen mobilized for this event. The Guard continues to maintain and fortify projects, conduct levee inspection and provide support to local law enforcement agencies and parish officials. Today, the Louisiana National Guard is providing aviation support to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to assess levees in Northeast Louisiana.

                        Since last week, in support of the parishes in Northeast Louisiana, Guardsmen located 19 new sand or pin boils. Guardsmen have now located and flagged 249 sand or pin boils to date: 81 in East Carroll, 14 in Madison, 67 in Tensas and 87 in Concordia. Guardsmen have moved 400,000 sandbags in support of 5th Levee District Operations in Northeast Louisiana.

                        DOTD has delivered 41,440 cubic yards of sand, and 376,011 sandbags across the state in support of flood protection efforts.

                        In Vidalia, DOTD has closed La. 15 from its junction with La. 565 to its junction with La. 131 at the request of the Corps of Engineers. The detour route will consist of U.S. 84 (Ferriday to Stacy), La. 129 (Stacy to Monterey), and La. 565 (Monterey to Deer Park). The closure will remain in effect until the Mississippi River recedes to the extent that the levee reinforcement work is no longer necessary.

                        Lafourche Parish

                        DOTD deployed four dump trucks to the Grand Isle Shipyard in Galliano in support of flood fortification operations. Additionally, DOTD hauled approximately 300 cubic yards of sand for the Lafourche Levee District in support of its sandbagging efforts, which brings the total to 1,300 cubic yards of sand to date.

                        Concordia Parish

                        DOTD hauled 180 cubic yards of sand to Concordia Parish in support of sandbagging efforts, which brings the total to 252 cubic yards of sand.

                        West Baton Rouge Parish

                        DOTD hauled approximately 15,000 sandbags from West Baton Rouge Parish to completed flood fortification efforts in Morgan City.

                        East Carroll and Madison Parish

                        DOTD has hauled 10,000 sandbags to East Carroll and Madison parishes. To date, DOTD has hauled approximately 313,400 sandbags for flood protection efforts across the affected northern parishes that line the Mississippi River (Tensas, Madison, and East Carroll parishes).


                        Department of Wildlife and Fisheries

                        Because of rising floodwaters, many animals have been displaced from their normal habitats. The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries has 205 enforcement agents and 25 wildlife staff on duty, in addition to deploying 103 all terrain vehicles and two amphibious airplanes. LDWF moved its Mobile Command Unit to Patterson in St. Mary parish, with the unit operating 24 hours a day. LDWF enforcement agents 584 contacts and issued 43 verbal warnings while on levee patrol since the evening of May 29.

                        LDWF continues to track and respond to reports of wildlife as necessary. In total, there have been 21 reported bear sightings. The Louisiana Black Bear remains on the threatened and endangered species list. For assistance with black bears that may be forced into populated areas by flood waters, LDWF asks the public call 1-800-442-2511 toll free.

                        For assistance with these, or any other wildlife species, that endanger human health or safety, call the following LDWF field offices at:
                        • Baton Rouge 225-765-2800
                        • Hammond 985-543-4777
                        • Monroe 318-343-4044
                        • New Iberia 337-373-0032
                        • Opelousas 337-948-0255
                        • Pineville 318-487-5885
                        Department of Corrections

                        To date, DOC offenders have provided the labor to fill approximately 538,000 sandbags.

                        http://emergency.louisiana.gov/Relea...ightingEfforts
                        "Safety and security don't just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most vulnerable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear."
                        -Nelson Mandela

                        Comment

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