News Release Manager

Corps of Engineers gears-up for predicted Mississippi and Ohio River flooding

Published March 8, 2011
MEMPHIS, Tenn., March 8, 2011 – The Memphis District, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers,
initiated a Phase I floodfight at 10 a.m. on March 7 due to high Mississippi and Ohio River stages with
increasing levels forecasted.

The lands affected by the current high water are located at the confluence of the Mississippi and
Ohio rivers at Cairo, Ill., and southward to the New Madrid, Mo., area.

Phase I floodfight activities begin when the Mississippi River gage at Cairo, Ill., reaches 49.0
feet. The river stage at Cairo reached 49.0 feet at 10 a.m. on March 7, with a forecasted crest of 50.6 feet expected on Friday, March 1. Forecasters believe the river will remain near or above 49 feet for several days to a week or more depending upon additional rainfall.

During Phase I floodfight activities, Corps of Engineers personnel deploy to the field and
monitor all federal flood control works including levees, flood walls and pumping stations.

Corps personnel will continue to monitor rainfall in the Missouri, upper Mississippi and Ohio
river basins, and National Weather Service forecasts to determine if Phase II floodfight activation is

The Corps’ Division headquarters in Vicksburg, Miss, coordinates all floodfight activities in the
Mississippi Valley. The Corps’ Emergency Operations Center in Memphis is directing these floodfight
activities in conjunction with the affected states, levee districts and other local interest groups.

The Federal flood protection works in the Mississippi Valley protect many thousands of homes,
millions of lives and vast tracts of fertile cropland. The Memphis District’s flood control system has
prevented more than $4.3 billion in flood damages and protected more than five million acres of
cropland in the last decade alone.
Public Affairs Office

Release no. 11-01