NEW ORLEANS – Citing heavy rain in the Mississippi Valley and rising river levels, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said it would open the Bonnet Carre Spillway on Monday at about 8 a.m.
The Corps estimated it would remain open for two to four weeks.
The opening is an effort to keep the Mississippi River flow from exceeding 1.25 million cubic feet per second.
Flood stage on the river in New Orleans is 17 feet. The level at the Carrollton Gauge Wednesday was over 14 feet.
The Corps is expected to open all 350 bays on the spillway because of the record levels on the river.
In 2008, the last time the spillway was opened, only 160 were opened.
The spillway takes pressure off New Orleans area levees by diverting the water toward the Lake Ponchartrain Basin.