US Bid to Save Louisiana Cities from Historic Flooding

New Orleans, May 15 (AFP) US Army engineers began opening a major Louisiana floodgate to ease pressure from the swollen Mississippi River, in a bid to save cities by sacrificing small towns and farmland that now face historic flooding.

The US Army Corps of Engineers opened a single bay at the key Morganza Spillway to allow a relatively small amount of the river through, avoiding what Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal described as a "wall of water" slamming thousands of homes and farmland in the state's rural south.

The effort, intended to spare the cities of New Orleans and Baton Rouge, marked the first time the spillway has been opened since 1973, and only the second time in the structure's almost 60-year history.

"This is certainly going to be a marathon and not a sprint," Major General Michael Walsh told a press conference earlier Saturday before the spillway was opened.


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Title: US Bid to Save Louisiana Cities from Historic Flooding

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