St. Landry

May 10, 2011 11:42 PM by Shawn Kline

Krotz Springs braces for flood

In Krotz Springs, another public meeting to prepare people for the rising waters, but there could be a mandatory evacuation of the area.

Looking at the Atchafalaya River, the water slowly rises. At the same time, the town of Krotz Springs comes up with a game plan: whether to stay or to leave home.

"That's strictly voluntary right now." St. Landry Parish President Don Menard says, "but at some point in time, we may be forced to issue a mandatory evacuation."

Parish and town officials aren't as worried about the water coming up on the east side of the levee. The town is protected by a ring levee almost 30-feet high. However, some of those who live outside the town could see water as early as next month.
The backwater is expected to come up on the west side of the levee and could put more than 200 homes in danger.

"The focus is really on the backwater and everybody's relaxed on the main levees." Mayor Carroll Snyder says, "(those levees) are still a concern."

That's because if there is a break in the levee, Krotz Springs could see a lot more water a lot sooner.

"In Butte LaRose, there's no levee." Krotz Springs resident Jimmy Gros says, "so it comes up the backside of it."

The situation is so serious some people like Gros are already seeing neighbors move out, but there's a problem with that too:

"All the storage units are full." Gros says, "the nearest place to go with our things is in Lafayette."

However, Gros says he's staying put.

"I'm not going nowhere." He says, "they can say it's mandatory- I'm going to stay and take care of my place and my family over here."

Parish President Menard however, stressed the seriousness of the impending flood.

"It is serious- look at Memphis," Menard said. "We don't know if we can expect something like that or not."



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