Corps closes gap at London Ave. Canal levee

Corps closes gap at London Ave. Canal levee

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is closing a gap in the levee at the London Ave. Canal as a precaution.

It is part of their standard operating procedure and they say it is best to be cautious.

Nobody hopes the work is necessary but Army Corps procedures mandate the gap be closed when tropical weather is a certain distance from New Orleans.

Michael Saacks, a Katrina survivor, has his eye on the Gulf of Mexico.

"If it was something bad, if it was a hurricane, I'd be concerned. But right now, I'm really not all that concerned," Saacks said.

Saacks lost everything 11 years ago and though he doesn't believe tropical depression nine will impact New Orleans, the Army Corps is taking precautions.

"As part of our plan, anytime you have an opening you have a procedure to close it in 24 hours and that's dictated by the potential of a storm impacting," Army Corps spokesman Ricky Boyett said.

The Army Corps was busy Monday afternoon closing a 60-foot gap in the levee at the London Ave. Canal, not far from the lake.

"What we don't want is to have it get close and everyone rushing in high winds," Boyett said.

So that means the time to act is now. They must close the gap with 36-foot long sheet pilings in a levee that failed 11 years ago, just in case.

The forecast calls for tropical depression nine to turn away from New Orleans.

People who lost everything 11 years ago on Aug. 29 hope the forecast holds true.

"If it got bad enough, my girlfriend would say we're leaving," Saaks said.

The Army Corps plans to bolster the newly installed sheet pile with sandbags. That work will likely take place Tuesday, as they say in an abundance of caution.

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