Lake Arthur levees will inevitably breach - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Officials: Lake Arthur levees will inevitably breach

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LAKE ARTHUR, LA (KPLC) -

Jeff Davis Parish officials say the levees protecting the low-lying city of Lake Arthur will inevitably be breached as water continues to rise.

Officials project the water will rise another two feet as early as Saturday.

"It's not a matter of if, it's a matter of when," said Jeff Davis Sheriff and OEP Director, Ivy Woods. "People need to be prepared to stay with relatives out of town for as long as they need to get the city back after the levees are breached."

Robbie Bertrand, Lake Arthur Mayor, said when the levees breach, the city will become almost non-functioning.

"The sewage systems will not be working for some time ... All until the water recedes and goes away," he said.

All of this comes after days of heavy rain across south Louisiana causing rivers to rise. In this case, the Mermentau near Mamou.

"All of that drains into here in Lake Arthur," said Bertrand. "The water ways are so backed up, there's nowhere for the water to go."

Officials urge residents to stay off of roadways and to prepare for water in their homes.  Already, Lake Arthur has risen to just inches below street level. Water from the lake meets the tops of wharfs and boat docks. Lake Arthur Park is completely underwater.

Tammy and Phil Thibodeaux live about 100 feet from the lake. They've prepared by getting all of their furniture off the floors and onto cement blocks.

"It is the worst knowing it's going to happen, and just sitting here watch it," said Tammy.

Just as 7News was leaving the Thibodeauxs, heavy rains started again.

"This is only going to make it happen faster," said Phil.

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