State Continues Flood Fighting Efforts
Monday, May 23, 2011 at 2:29:22 PM

BATON ROUGE -- State agencies continue their efforts to fight and prepare for flooding in communities across Louisiana. Updates from individual agencies are below.

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.

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.

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 hung 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 ½ 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.

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