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Barge flood gate to be sunk in Bayou Chene Wednesday

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ST. MARTIN PARISH - Workers began sinking a barge, which will act as a temporary flood gate, into Bayou Chene Wednesday afternoon. It's just days before the scheduled opening of the Morganza Spillway.

The governor's office confirmed Wednesday that the barge was in place and the process would begin Wednesday afternoon. Crews are expected to work through Thursday and into the weekend to complete the job.

The barge will act as a temporary flood control structure to keep backwater flooding in the Atchafalaya Basin from entering Assumption, St. Martin and parts of St. Mary parishes. Photos of the installation were posted on social media Tuesday.

Officials announced Monday morning they expect to open the spillway on June 2. Current forecasts indicate that the river will reach a stage in excess of 62 feet at Red River Landing on June 5, according to officials. The Army Corps of Engineers will continue to monitor forecasts and river conditions.

There were two public meetings held Tuesday and Wednesday ahead of the opening.

Click here for the full flood inundation map.

The Louisiana Dept. of Wildlife & Fisheries is urging residents to be cognizant of wildlife seeking higher ground ahead of the Morganza Spillway opening. Minimize contact with the animals as they adjust.

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