Car found blocking Mid-City underground canal

S&WB believes that, other debris, contributed to overtopping of Lafitte Canal

Chris Miller
August 21, 2019 - 3:15 pm

The New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board today announced it wants to launch an in-depth analysis of its underground drainage, to see just how much remediation it needs to allow for proper drain flow.

An example of how bad it may be was found in a recent check of the Lafitte Canal. The Sewerage and Water board used an amphibious vehicle equipped with an underwater camera. It came across a car, overturned and partially blocking the drain.

"While most canals receive water from catch basins and smaller pipes, the Lafitte Canal consists of both open and underground sections, rendering this canal more vulnerable to large obstructions entering the open canal and causing underground blockages," the Sewerage and Water Board said. 

The inspection came as a result of the July 10 flood, caused by a brief but intense downpour that morning. The Lafitte Canal "experienced minor overtopping" leading to the Sewerage and Water Board's decision to look for unseen issues.

Sewerage and Water Board says the underground inspection of Lafitte Canal will continue all the way through to Drainage Pumping Station 7 in City Park, at a cost of over $100,000.

"This is a direct reflection of this team’s commitment to a new way of doing things," said Ghassan Korban, Executive Director, Sewerage and Water Board of New Orleans. "We saw an issue on July 10 and wasted no time in working to find the root of the problem and develop a solution."

The S&WB says it is "aggressively exploring all options" for removing the car as soon as possible.

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