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Army Corps of Engineers: Opening Morganza Spillway not necessary

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NEW ORLEANS - The Army Corps of Engineers says it won't need to open the Morganza Floodway to draw down the Mississippi River's crest. This will be a relief for homeowners and farmers in the spillway.

On Monday the corps said forecasts on the Mississippi's crest and flow rate show the river can pass safely down to the Gulf of Mexico without diverting water.

The floodway is opened if the river is at least 57 feet high at Morganza and rising, and 1.5 million cubic feet of water is flowing every second.

Forecasts show the river reaching 57 feet on Jan. 15 but the peak flow rate is expected to be 1.44 million cubic feet of water a second by Jan. 17.

The floodway, north of Baton Rouge, has been opened twice before.

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