While the Midwest continues to deal with the aftermath of flooding, the U.S. Army Engineer Corps is turning its attention toward the Mississippi River area. The corps is preparing strategies including opening the Bonnet Carrie Spillway which would divert up to 250,000 cubic feet per second of water into Lake Pontchartrain, north of New Orleans.
In addition to their preventative measures, agencies are taking note of the fact that the Mississippi was cresting Tuesday in Caruthersville, Missouri, reaching 42.6 feet. Although that is 32 feet above what is considered flooding, officials are not yet panicking:
“We’re at the highest levels we’ve ever had for the time of year, but the levels we’re getting have been reached and exceeded several times in the past,” said Jeff Graschel, a hydrologist at the Lower Mississippi River Forecast Center, an arm of the National Weather Service, in Slidell, Louisiana.