Lower Mississippi River (LMR) Dredging Update
The Corps of Engineers Mississippi Valley New Orleans (MVN) continues dredging operations in response to record shoaling deposited by historic long-term high river stages (record flood event created by record precipitation levels). The MVN continues to concentrate efforts on the Crossings Above New Orleans as the channel in Southwest Pass has mostly been recovered. All three dustpan dredges and two hopper dredges are working on the Crossings and one cutterhead dredge continues working on the channel in Southwest Pass. The controlling draft for the Mississippi River Ship Channel is 47 feet (freshwater) from Mile 180 Above Head of Passes (AHP) to the sea-buoy. The maximum draft recommendation above Mile 180 AHP remains 45 feet (normal).
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) IN SOUTHWEST PASS (SWP):
C.R. McCASKILL: Weeks Marine’s cutterhead dredge C.R. McCASKILL is dredging at Mile 17.36 Below Head of Passes (BHP) on assignment from Mile 15.7 BHP to Mile 18.0 BHP on the western side of the channel. The next assignment will be from Mile 6.8 BHP to Mile 8.6 BHP also on the western side of the channel. The cutterhead began dredging on July 24, 2019 under Southwest Pass Cutterhead Dredge Rental Contract #2-2019.
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) IN THE HOPPER DREDGE DISPOSAL AREA (HDDA):
R.S. WEEKS: The industry cutterhead dredge R.S. WEEKS (Weeks Marine) continues dredging at the HDDA, all material is being beneficially used in the Pass A’Loutre Wildlife Management Area (PALWMA). The contract is to remove 12 million cubic yards (mcy) of material, approximately 8.7 mcy of material have now been beneficially utilized in the PALWMA.
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) IN THE NEW ORLEANS HARBOR:
CAPTAIN FRANK: The cutterhead dredge CAPTAIN FRANK (Weeks Marine) has completed the assignment in the New Orleans Harbor (New Orleans Harbor Cutterhead Dredge Rental Contract #1-2019). The dredge is now working on the forebay at the Inner Harbor Navigation Canal and will soon move to the forebay at the Algiers Lock.
DUSTPAN DREDGE(S) ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
Federally Authorized Channel Dimensions on the Crossings are 500 feet by 45 feet, most of the dredges continue working to maintain at least half of the authorized channel width or as noted the central 250 feet.
WALLCE McGEORGE: The industry dustpan dredge WALLCE McGEORGE continues dredging the central 350 feet at Baton Rouge Front (Mile 231 AHP). The industry dustpan dredge commenced dredging on the Crossings on May 9, 2019.
HURLEY: The Corps dustpan dredge HURLEY continues dredging operations on the central 250 feet of channel at Red Eye Crossing (Mile 224 AHP). The government dustpan dredge commenced dredging on the Crossings on May 4, 2019.
JADWIN: The Corps dustpan dredge is dredging the central 250 feet of channel at Philadelphia Crossing (Mile 183 AHP). The government dustpan dredge returned to dredging on the Crossings on September 13, 2019 after completing a temporary assignment on the shallow-draft channel.
HOPPER DREDGE(S) ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
NEWPORT: The industry hopper dredge NEWPORT (Manson Construction) continues working the central 250 feet of channel at two locations: Missouri Bend (Mile 222 AHP) during daylight hours and alternating to Sardine Point (Mile 219 AHP) from dusk to dawn. The NEWPORT is dredging under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #8-2019 and is expected to remain on the Ship Channel until early November 2019.
STUYVESANT: The industry hopper dredge STUYVESANT (Dutra Group) is dredging full channel width (500 feet) at Medora Crossing (Mile 212 AHP). The STUYVESANT began dredging under Southwest Pass Hopper Dredge Rental Contract #10-2019 on June 14, 2019 and is expected to continue dredging on this contract until early October (2019).
The Carrollton Gauge (New Orleans) reading at 1200 hours today was 5.24 feet, with a 24-hour change of + 0.10 feet.
The Baton Rouge Gauge reading at 0800 hours today was 14.17 feet, with a 24-hour change of – 0.08 feet.
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.