Monroe Sewer Manager Charles Westrom said, "We're making every effort we can to man the stations and do what we need to do to keep the city dry."
The city usually relies on gravity to pull excess water from the city into the river .
Westrom said, "The gravity water normally flows through this canal, as you can see the water is backed up."
But it's raining so much and the river is so high, water is starting to flow back from the river into the city. You can see how bad the problem is at the water station at Tenth street and Willow. People can normally walk down to the river and even sit on the benches, but the river is so high, you can't even see the bottom. Monroe has closed five of 12 flood gates And the Tensas Basin Levee District has closed two major flood gates. All to stop backwater from flooding the city's ditches.
Director John Stringer says in his 33 years with the levee district he has never seen anything like this.
John Stringer said, "We're seeing record levels for this time of year, it's very unusual to have the river this high, this time of year. Certainly we want to see the water get out of here before mid to late December when we start to see high water."
Closing the flood gates means we are relying on pumps like these to push water across the levee into the river. The problem is that these pumps don't work as fast as the gravity flood gates. Officials say they're are hoping the pumps work faster than the rain falls.
Stringer said, "We shouldn't have any problem keeping up with the predicted rainfall."