Rising river could impact fishing industry

Rising river could impact fishing industry

NORCO, LA (WVUE) - For the first time since 2013, the Mississippi River is high enough to close the road along the Bonnet Carre Spillway between Norco and Montz. Water started pouring over the gates at the spillway earlier this week.

The flooding begins when the river gauge at the Carrollton station reaches 13 feet. That has not happened for two years.

"I hope it gets to 14 feet," said fisherman Danny Simoneaux. He said in 2013 he was able to catch eleven sacks of crawfish in an hour in the spillway. "If it gets to 14 feet, we know it floods a little more so that we can get them. If it doesn't flood, then most of the ponds don't fill up."

The US Army Corps of Engineers is closely watching the river levels too.

"Right now we're still in that phase 1 flood fight," said U.S. Army Corps of Engineers spokesman Rene Poche. "So we do levee inspections twice a week. Levee inspections so far haven't found anything out of the ordinary. Everything, so far, is looking good."

The river is expected to crest at the Carrollton Gauge next week at 14 feet. The spillway does not need to be opened as long as the river stays below 17 feet. The spillway has not been open since 2011.

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