Dam Is Likely To Fail Impacting Kentwood And Robert
TANGIPAHOA PARISH, La. (KPEL) — Tangipahoa Parish President Gordon Burgess says a dam is in imminent threat of failure in McComb at the Percy Quinn State Park, threatening residents along the Tangipahoa river from Kentwood to Robert, according to WWL in New Orleans.
Reports vary, but some say Burgess has called for an evacuation of 50,000 to 60,000 along the Tangipahoa River, and says residents have about 90 minutes as of 10:10 a.m. before the water would reach Kentwood. Other reports say Gov. Bobby Jindal ordered the evacuation of 20 families. The town of Kentwood has now been included in that order.
Jeff McKneely, a Tangipahoa Parish spokesperson, says if the dam fails, it could add another four feet of water to an already swollen Tangipahoa River.
“Last time this happened I believe was in the early 80′s and the force of the water actually took out the Highway 16 bridge over the Tangipahoa River,” McComb says.
Jindal says Mississippi authorities will likely perform a controlled breach of the dam in order to relieve pressure.
According to ABC’s Good Morning America, Mississippi officials say there is a 50 percent chance the dam could fail. The Associated Press cites officials there who say they don’t believe there is enough volume in lake to cause major flooding in rivers.