LAMA’s report on the Corps’ Mississippi River Maintenance Forum meeting held this morning, Wednesday, October 2, 2019 and the corresponding agenda are attached.
The graph below is reproduced from NOAA’s National Weather Service website and represents an experimental product to account for the complexity of accurately predicting long-range precipitation. This forecast projects stage levels based on expected precipitation for 2 days (top) and 16 days (bottom) and was developed within the North American Ensemble Forecast System (NAEFS) computer model and highlights Quantitative Precipitation Forecasts (QPF). Along with the forecasts, a shaded area is also provided to indicate uncertainty for the forecast each day in the future. These plots are experimental and not an official forecast product.
RE: CORPS’ MISSISSIPPI RIVER MAINTENANCE FORUM MEETING NOTES
The Corps’ Mississippi Valley New Orleans (MVN) holds monthly meetings to discuss channel conditions and related issues directly with the maritime industry. These meetings are usually scheduled for 0900 hours on the first Wednesday of the month. LAMA encourages our members to attend these meetings, which are open to the public (with advanced notice of attendance provided to MVN). The agenda for this meeting as provided by the MVN is attached.
2) Southeast Waterways Update:
Tiger Pass: The MVN advertised a bid opening on September 23, 2019 for a cutterhead dredge to restore channel dimensions on Tiger Pass. Three bids were received but all of them were substantially greater than the 25% over the Government Estimate limit and could not be rewarded as received. The MVN is in the process of converting this advertisement to a Request for Proposal in attempt to secure a cutterhead for this project. The funding was expected to be sufficient to restore the channel to reduced dimensions of 12 feet throughout by removing approximately 1.9 million cubic yards (mcy) of sediment.
Baptiste Collette: The Corps previously received $13.9 million in supplemental funding to perform dredging operations ($6.5 million) and rock work to fortify the jetties and channel boundaries ($7.4 million) of Baptiste Collette. The MVN also received an additional $3 million from the Corps FY 19 Work Plan. The cutterhead dredge CROSBY DREDGER (Crosby Dredging) began dredging on July 29, 2019 the contract was expected to be completed in early December (2019) although based on production rates the timeline may need to be extended. The MVN announced the low bidder for the rock work contract is TKTMJ Incorporated and that the rock placement should start by mid-November.
3) Mississippi River Conditions Update:
Current Stage New Orleans (Carrollton Gauge): 5.76 feet
• Projections indicate a slow rise to 7.1 feet by October 21 before beginning a slow fall.
Current Stage Baton Rouge: 16.0 feet
• Projections indicate a slow rise to 21.0 feet by October 20 before beginning a slow fall.
A. Crossings Between Baton Rouge and New Orleans:
The latest surveys for the Crossings Between Baton and New Orleans are included in the attached agenda. The surveys identify considerable shoaling on the Crossings, the Corps is actively dredging with three dustpan dredges: HURLEY, JADWIN and WALLACE McGEORGE and the industry hopper dredge: NEWPORT. The HURLEY will be released tomorrow to respond to a shallow-draft assignment but is expected to return to the Crossings on October 19, 2019.
B. New Orleans Harbor:
The industry cutterhead dredge CAPTAIN FRANK worked on assignment in the New Orleans Harbor from August 30, 2019 to September 23, 2019. The cutterhead returned to complete additional assignments on September 30, 2019 but is expected to complete this contract later today.
C. Southwest Pass (SWP):
The MVN continues working deficient areas of SWP with the cutterhead dredge C.R. McCASKILL, the industry hopper dredge NEWPORT could also return to SWP from the Crossings. The NEWPORT is under contract with MVN until mid-November (2019). The C.R. McCASKILL is presently working from Mile 6.8 Below Head of Passes (BHP) to Mile 8.6 BHP on the western side of the channel, the cutterhead’s next assignment is expected to be from Cubits Gap (Mile 3.5 Above Head of Passes) to the Head of Passes (Mile 0) also on the western side of the channel.
D. Head of Passes, Hopper Dredge Disposal Area (HDDA):
The R.S. WEEKS has now removed approximately 9.0 mcy of material from the HDDA and is beneficially placing this material in the Pass A’Loutre Wildlife Management Area (PALWMA). A recent increase in funding was utilized to extend this contract and increase the amount of material to be removed from 12.0 mcy to 15.3 mcy of material. The project will restore approximately 800 acres in the PALWMA.
E. Southwest Pass Stone Foreshore Dike & Jetty Repair:
A contract was awarded to EFT Diversified, Inc. on July 16, 2018 to make repairs to the foreshore rocks that protect the deep-draft channel in Southwest Pass. The rock placement operations continue, and the contractor is working closely with the Pilot Associations to assist in maintaining navigational safety around the rock placement operations. The MVN announced today that the rock contract would be completed by this weekend.