River Update

The following dispatch is from Lt. Col. Larry Landry, deputy chief of Operational Services for the St. Martin Parish Sheriff's Office and deputy director of the parish Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness:

The Atchafalaya River stage at Morgan City is 7.03 feet. The water level in Stephensville is 3.5 feet. The crest date has changed to Wednesday, April 23. The crest is still set at 7.5 feet. Local rain predictions call for a 40 percent chance of rain Friday night.

The Atchafalaya River at Butte LaRose is not expected to reach flood stage, however the water level is high making river travel very treacherous. One resident of “Happytown” on the Atchafalaya River north of I-10 in Upper St Martin Parish has requested sandbags for his home in anticipation of rising water there. Parish Government has made provisions to provide them.

St. Martin OEP has made a request through WebEOC to the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries for water patrol assistance for this weekend, April 19 and 20. They have assisted for the past two weekends. There are fishing tournaments scheduled every weekend. Doiron’s has cancelled its tournament scheduled for April 20 due to high water. Other tournaments are still ongoing. SMSO Deputies have issued seven citations for No Wake Zone violations.

U.S. Coast Guard has also been patrolling the waterways of Lower St. Martin in the Stephensville and Belle River areas. St. Mary and Assumption Parish Sheriff’s Offices continue to help in water patrol on the weekend also.

Parish Government has provided more “No Wake Zone” signs for the Adams Landing and Belle River areas. They will be placed within the next few days.

The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development, DOTD, has placed “High Water” signs and traffic cones on the improved shoulder in the 2700 Block of Highway 70 north of Stephensville. The water level is just at the shoulder of the highway.

Flags have been placed on the shoulder of Parish Roads: Edna Street, Adelle Street, and Four Mile Bayou Road, to assist motorists should flood waters top the roadways.

All elderly/handicapped property owners that requested assistance in sandbagging have been helped. Two local churches and St. Martin Parish Sheriff’s Office trustee work crews assigned to Parish Government completed the tasks.

To date 35,000 sandbags have been delivered to Lower St Martin and about 25,000 issued to residents. Local residents continue sandbagging operations with Parish Government re-supplying sand piles as needed.

St Martin Parish Water District No. 1 (Sewer Plant) reports no problems and no assistance needed.

There is no anticipated call for evacuation expected at this time. Water levels are continued to be monitored. Some homes and/or camps have water in yards but no structures are currently threatened.

Due to the anticipated flood crest on April 23 and the prolonged High Water situation afterwards St. Martin Parish anticipates filing an Extension on the Declared State of Emergency that was filed on March 26, 2008.

Other than the request for LDWF water patrol support no other resource requests to the State are anticipated.

Also read Risks associated with flooding

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