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PRESS RELEASE

London Avenue Canal Gate Close and 17th Street Canal Gates Closing
BATON ROUGE, La. (September 1, 2008) - As a result of water rising to the operational trigger on both canals, Col. Alvin B. Lee, New Orleans District commander, ordered the canal gates closed late Monday afternoon . This is the first time that enough water has been available in the canal for storm event operation of the temporary pumps.

The gates take about 50 minutes to close and, once closed, the Corps can begin pumping water from the canal into the lake to maintain the safe water elevations.

A three-person team located in the safe room at the structure operates the gates and pumps.

"The interim control structures along the lakefront have significantly reduced the hurricane risk to New Orleans," said Col. Lee. "The Corps continually rehearses the operation of these structures and we are confident that they will perform as designed."

The Corps works closely with the Sewerage & Water Board to maximize their drainage capacity while ensuring public safety by maintaining the safe water elevation.

Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) equipment enables the emergency operations center to monitor and operate the system remotely as a redundancy in our operation plan, should the need arise. This system, added after Hurricane Katrina, contributes greatly to public and operator safety.

Public safety is the Corps' number one priority.

For the latest on Hurricane Gustav, you can visit emergency.louisiana.gov or call the state's emergency hotline at 1-866-288-2484 to listen to a recorded message with the most up-to-date information.

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