Journal of Hydrology

Mississippi River channel response to the Bonnet Carré Spillway opening in the 2011 flood

Mead Allison

The large Mississippi River flood in 2011 was notable in south Louisiana for requiring operation of several flood control structures to reduce stress on levees. The largest of these control structures was the Bonnet Carré Spillway which opened for 42 days in May and June. This diversion took about 20 percent of the total flood discharge from the Mississippi River, providing an opportunity to examine the impact of large water diversions on the sediment transport capacity of large rivers.