Army Corps of Engineers monitors flood potential along Mississippi River

Army Corps of Engineers monitors flood potential along Mississippi River

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) - The Mississippi River is expected to rise above flood stage Tuesday.

Minor flooding is expected in Memphis with a maximum height of 36.5 feet on May 13.

While Memphis is only expected to receive minor flooding, other Mid-South areas could see more significant flooding.

Flooding in Tunica, Mississippi, is listed as moderate with a 48 foot crest, while flood waters in Osceola, Arkansas, are categorized as major, with a crest coming May 12.

The Army Corps of Engineers in Memphis is watching the river closely. Green Belt Park on Mud Island is already flooded, but experts with the Army Corps of Engineers said this flood event will be more bark than bite.

The Corps said the river will crest in Memphis roughly a half foot lower than the real danger zone.

However, that doesn't mean this flooding event is harmless.

"With this amount of water, you're going to be having faster currents, and it's going to be carrying a lot more debris down the river," Steve Barry with the US Army Corps of Engineers said.

Tributaries like the Nonconnah, Wolf, and Loosahatchie are expected to back up.

There are five areas in the Mid-South--including Tipton, Lauderdale, and Dyer counties--where Phase 2 flood fight efforts are underway. Phase 2 flood fight efforts mean Army Corps of Engineer staff members are on the ground looking at levees and actively checking water levels.

Still the Corps maintains impact will be minimal.

"A lot of water but not going to be something we are overly concerned with here in Memphis," Barry said.

Shelby County officials are already preparing for the flood waters.

"We are working with our partner agencies to continually monitor the minor flooding of the Mississippi River until the water level drops below flood stage next week," Shelby County Office of Preparedness Director Dale Lane said. "It's dangerous when it's low, but it's really dangerous when it's high."

Shelby County officials met with National Weather Service, Memphis Office of Emergency Management, Germantown Emergency Management, and local public works and law enforcement officials.

Those county leaders spent Monday going door-to-door in some flood prone areas of Harbor Town to remind residents to keep an eye on water levels.

"We're just touching base, being good neighbors, making sure they have the information and they're paying attention to the river," Lane said.

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