BRAITHWAITE, La. – Plaquemines Parish officials intend to cut as many as ten openings in a levee to drain water from a soaked parish Friday.
Parish President Billy Nungesser said the cuts and pumps will help expedite getting the water out.
He said while the process seems fairly straightforward, it’s a little more complicated. Nungesser said the equipment has to stay by the breaches to patch them when the tide rolls in and to open them again when the tide rolls out.
Parts of Plaquemines Parish, particularly Braithwaite, saw rising waters that caught those who stayed off guard. Several dozen people had to be rescued from rooftops and attics. A man and woman died. Their bodies found inside a home on Thursday.
He said the parish did a similar thing after Hurricane Gustav, but said Isaac presents more of a challenge.
“This was three times the water that was in Gustav,” he said.
Nungesser lamented the timing of Isaac, saying recent work with the Army Corps of Engineers showed promise for 100-year flood protection for much of the parish in three years time. He said bids on the project just went out.
“We needed a couple more years without a storm and we didn’t get it.”