London Avenue Canal gates opening

Published Sept. 14, 2009
NEW ORLEANS – Gates at the London Ave. Canal Interim Control Structure began opening just after 8 a.m. today after the lake level subsided below 2.5 feet.
On Saturday, easterly winds and heavy rain caused Lake Pontchartrain’s water level to reach the operational trigger of 2.5 feet and rising, prompting us to close the gates and begin pumping.
Previous procedures called for closing the gates when the lake-side gage reached 4 feet and rising only during tropical events. Lowering that elevation and operating during nontropical events reduces the risk of exceeding the canal’s safe water elevation. It also maximizes the Sewerage and Water Board’s pumping ability during heavy rainfall.
A three person team had been located at the structure throughout the weekend and is responsible for operating the gates and pumps from the control room.

Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) equipment enables our emergency operations center to remotely monitor and operate the system as a redundancy in our operation plan, should the need arise.
The Corps’ pumps have a maximum combined capacity of 5,200 cubic feet per second at the London Ave. Canal.
The lake is currently at about 2 feet and we will continue to monitor rainfall and tides in the lake

Release no. 09-058