NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - Call it a "wet" run through. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers opened a section of the Bonnet Carre Spillway control structure Wednesday to practice what it would be like during a real flood event.
The workers lifted about 20 of the wooden needles, removing and replacing them with the added resistance of water.
The Corps doesn't plan to open the spillway anytime soon, but crews practice year-round to be ready.
"Where we have an advantage today is we're able to simulate that real-world condition where water is coming through," said Ricky Boyett with the Army Corps of Engineers. "Water will shift how that needle feels, how it is when they're placed in and also it's a little different when the water's coming through. With new crew members, we want them comfortable now. We want them to have gone through, work out all the kinks, get the coordination and communication down. That way if it comes time to open it, they're fine."
The Mississippi River is slowly dropping after cresting above 14 feet last week. The Corps has no plans to open the entire spillway.