Posted: May 6, 2011 9:55 AM by Russell Jones
Updated: May 6, 2011 9:55 AM
BATON ROUGE - Sandbags started going out today along lower points of the levees in East Baton Rouge Parish ahead of expected record-breaking river levels.
Dozens of Department of Public Works employees were out early putting up sandbag barricades along the levee at River Road and North Street in Baton Rouge.
Mayor Kip Holden said in a press conference earlier this week that area was a point of concern because it was among the lowest spots in the levee system at 46.7 feet. If water were to come over that levee it could potentially flood the downtown area of the city.
The sandbags will raise the levees to 50 or 51 feet high. An additional foot-and-a-half of new water-filled tubing purchased by the city-parish will also go out along two miles of the levee system.
Preparations are going on throughout the state to deal with expected flooding as the Mississippi River continues to rise due to heavy rainfall in the Midwest. The river is expected to crest at almost 48 feet in Baton Rouge around May 23, according to the latest forecasts.