Red River crest expected at 34 feet, Sheriff advises residents to be prepared
Inmate crews with the Bossier Sheriff’s Office have placed sandbags around the Bossier Sheriff’s Substation on Arthur Ray Teague Parkway as water levels are expected to reach a foot or more into the facility upon cresting of the Red River next week.
Some 3,500 bags are estimated to protect the facility. Inmates have filled some 31,000 sandbags as of May 30, and more will be filled as crews work around the clock to help residents of Bossier Parish.
For those most affected by the flooding in South Bossier, the Sheriff’s Office is encouraging residents to stop by Elm Grove Elementary School to pick up sandbags.
Local and state agencies have been monitoring water levels on the Red River over several days. Bossier Sheriff Julian Whittington has been in close contact with officials from the Bossier Parish Police Jury, City of Bossier City and Bossier Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, as news came out Friday that the National Weather Service now predicts the Red River will crest at 34 feet on June 6, a one foot increase over the previous crest’s prediction.
Officials predict flood conditions are now expected to be similar to that of 1990 or in similar past major South Bossier flood events.
“I can’t stress enough to folks who live in south Bossier Parish, especially in the low lying areas, the impact this much water will have,” said Sheriff Whittington. “Right now is the time to makes plans to place sandbags around your property, move your livestock, or just prepare to relocate to higher ground. There will be flooding.”
Parish and city officials are also coordinating with businesses and residents along the Red River, including the casinos, River Bluff, Cash Point and others, to determine any impact the rising Red may have on them. For now, Sheriff Whittington advises residents in South Bossier to have an evacuation plan in place, move your livestock to higher ground and stock up on needed supplies. Some roads will become impassable, and you should never drive through roadways that have water flowing – turn around, don’t drown.
For those who wish to move their livestock, you can contact Colton Wilkins at 401-6138, who has offered to arrange safely relocating livestock to his land on Highway 527.
While the Red River rises, the bayous and waterways in South Bossier which feed into the Red will see backwater flooding, including Loggy Bayou, Flat River and Red Chute Bayou. As the Red rises, so will they, and officials believe backwater flooding from where Loggy Bayou meets the Red River could occur as far north as Highway 527…possibly even further north. Sheriff Whittington and officials will meet Monday to further assess the situation and provide a more clear understanding of the impact of the flooding.
Patrol deputies will continue to monitor the water levels and notify and assist residents. Sheriff Whittington encourages neighbors to look out for one another and to contact the Sheriff’s Office at 965-2203 if there are any special needs, especially with the elderly and those with medical conditions.
Sandbags will continue to be available for residents at three locations throughout Bossier Parish – Bossier Parish Highway Department Maintenance Barn at 410 Mayfield St. in Benton and the Bossier City Public Service Complex at 3223 Old Shed Rd. in Bossier City from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays, and anytime at the Elm Grove Elementary School in south Bossier.
Sheriff Whittington and local officials will continue to monitor the water levels of the Red River and provide an update as early as Monday, if not sooner, and discuss any other needed assistance measures.