Bonnet Carre To Remain Open
The Bonnet Carre Spillway will have to remain open longer than officials were hoping for as rainwater from once Hurricane Barry makes it’s way down the Mississippi River.
Corps of Engineers spokesperson Ricky Boyett says before they can close the Spillway, the river must drop to 21 feet at the structure, but that’s just not happening…
“Right now what we are really waiting on is for the rain to finish. As Barry moves up the valley, it’s putting more rain in the river and ultimately that rain has to come down to us.”
21 feet at the Spillway would put the river around 16 feet in New Orleans.
Boyett says they aren’t concerned that the additional water will put any of the levee system in danger.
“We’re not seeing a rise, what we’re seeing is an extended fall. It’s going to level out for about a week or so, and then we will start to see a slow fall.”
Toxic algae blooms linked to the Spillway’s opening have continued to shutter Mississippi beaches during a peak tourist season.
The Spillway has been open for a record number of days this year and has even had to be opened twice in one year for the first time ever. Boyett says they were hoping to put that streak to an end…
“Before Barry started putting water in the area we were looking at hoping to get to that trigger mark sometime between today and the 18th, and unfortunately we are not seeing that right now.”
The structure has had to remain open as record rainfall in the Midwest has pushed the river’s height to dangerous levels.