The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) continues working on the historic project to deepen the Mississippi River Ship Channel (MRSC) to 50 feet. The USACE has now completed dredging to restore full channel dimensions (45 feet by 500 feet) of the MRSC on the Crossings Above New Orleans.
MISSISSIPPI RIVER SHIP CHANNEL DEEPENING PHASE 1:
The three cutterhead dredges listed below continue dredging on their contractual deepening assignments for Phase 1 of the Ship Channel deepening. The USACE intends to deepen the Ship Channel from Venice to the Gulf of Mexico (Phase 1) with a total of three dredge contracts, specifically the two cutterhead dredge contracts detailed below and one for the hopper dredge GLENN EDWARDS (Manson Construction). The GLENN EDWARDS will complete the final portions of the Ship Channel deepening project and is also under contract for Fiscal Year 2021 channel maintenance and will be moved between the two contracts by the MVN dependent upon channel conditions. The GLENN EDWARDS is expected to arrive in Southwest Pass on January 13, 2021 and to begin work on the deepening project.
Weeks Marine was awarded Southwest Pass Cutterhead Dredge Rental Contract #1-2020 on September 3, 2020 and is presently responding to this contract with the cutterhead dredges CAPTAIN FRANK and E.W. ELLEFSEN.
CUTTERHEAD DREDGES WORKING IN SOUTHWEST PASS:
E.W. ELLEFSEN: The E.W. ELLEFSEN (Weeks Marine) is presently working at
Mile 5.2 Below Head of Passes (BHP) dredging on assignment from Mile 1.0 BHP to Mile 6.0 BHP on the western side of the Ship Channel.
CAPTAIN FRANK: The industry cutterhead dredge CAPTAIN FRANK (Weeks Marine) officially commenced the historic project to deepen the Mississippi River Ship Channel to 50 feet on September 11, 2020. The CAPTAIN FRANK is dredging at Mile 17.98 BHP working on assignment from Mile 14.4 BHP to Mile 18 BHP on the eastern side of the Ship Channel
ROBERT M. WHITE: The ROBERT M. WHITE (Manson Construction) is dredging at Mile 15.58 BHP on an extended assignment from Mile 9.0 BHP to Mile 18.0 BHP on the western side of the channel. The cutterhead is working under Southwest Pass Cutterhead Dredge Rental Contract #2-2020 that was awarded to Manson Construction on September 8, 2020.
CUTTERHEAD DREDGE(S) IN THE HOPPER DREDGE DISPOSAL AREA (HDDA):
ILLINOIS: Great Lakes Dredge and Dock was awarded Hopper Dredge Disposal Area Cutterhead Rental Contract #1-2019. Great Lakes intends to respond to this contract with their cutterhead dredge ILLINOIS. This contract will require the installation of a submerged dredge pipeline to place the removed dredge material in the West Bay Receiving Area. The placement of the submerged pipeline will require two daytime closure(s) of the Ship Channel estimated to last 12-hours each. The pipeline will cross the Ship Channel between Mile 1.4 AHP to Mile 1.2 AHP from the eastern side of the channel into the West Bay. The contract includes the removal of 10 million cubic yards (mcy) in the base with options to add an additional 4 mcy. The pipeline placement and closures are now expected to be conducted on January 15 and January 17, the actual closure dates should be confirmed no later than Monday, January 11, 2021 (tomorrow).
DUSTPAN DREDGE(S) ON THE CROSSINGS ABOVE NEW ORLEANS:
The USACE completed dredging and has restored full channel dimensions (45 feet by 500 feet) of the Ship Channel on the Crossings Above New Orleans. The dredging on the Crossings for Fiscal Year 2020 has been completed.
WALLACE McGEORGE: The industry dustpan dredge WALLACE McGEORGE completed dredging near the Arlington Lights (Mile 226.5 AHP) yesterday morning. The dredging on the Crossings (Ship Channel) is now complete and the WALLANCE McGEORGE is now dredging at the Baton Rouge Harbor (Mile 235.5 AHP). The WALLACE McGEORGE commenced dredging on the Crossings on Thursday, May 21, 2020.
The Carrollton Gauge (New Orleans) reading at 1300 hours today was 8.49 feet with a 24-hour change of + 0.45 feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Carrollton Gauge issued today predicts a rise to 10.1 feet and remaining steady for a few days before beginning a slow fall to 6.8 feet on February 7, 2021.
The Baton Rouge Gauge reading at 1400 hours today was 26.65 feet with a 24-hour change of + 0.67 feet. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Weather Service Extended Streamflow Prediction (28-Day) for the Baton Rouge Gauge issued today predicts a rise to 29.3 feet and remaining steady for a few days before beginning a slow fall to 19.1 feet on February 7, 2021.
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.