Mississippi River projected to hit 20 feet as storm nears

Chris Miller
July 10, 2019 - 10:45 am

The National Weather Service is now predicting the Mississippi River to crest at 20 feet at the Carrollton gauge near Uptown New Orleans. This would put the river at the top of the levee in some areas, but still more than a foot below the recorded all-time high of 21.3 feet.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards says the greatest risk of river flooding is in Plaquemines Parish.

"There could be a considerable amount of overtopping of the Mississippi River levees in Plaquemines Parish on both the Eastbank and the Westbank," said Gov. Edwards. "We are targeting areas south of Oakville on the Westbank and sout of Caernarvon on the Eastbank as being most likely to be at risk for flooding due to opvertopping of the levees."

The weather service says storm surge from what is now "Potential Tropical Cyclone 2" in the Gulf of Mexico is the reason for the predicted increase in water levels on the Mississippi.

#BREAKINGNEWS The National Weather Service has revised the forecast for the Miss. River at New Orleans to reach 20' due to storm surge based on the new forecast of #Barry. We are protected up to 20', but this would place the river level to the tops of the levees. Stay with @wwltv for the latest. #BeOn4

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The Mississippi River has been at high water levels for a record amount of time this year, including two separate openings of the Bonnet Carre spillway this year. The spillway is still open as it diverts water coming downstream, about 30 miles upriver from New Orleans.

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