Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Flooding At Payneway From Space

These images were released by NASA to show the flooding in the Memphis area, but the more interesting part of these images may be what is happening to Payneway, AR. You see, it's flooding in Payneway, but they are on the "dry" side of the levee. Natural assumption would be that the levee broke, but that's not the case. My News Director who grew up in the area, Hatton Weeks, pointed out what is happening. Click the image to enlarge and here is a zoomed in image...
The water typically flows from north to south (green arrows) and stays to the East of the levee, which I marked with a red line. That levee ENDS well south of Payneway, but since the water flows from north to south, that's typically not a problem. However, the Mississippi river is HIGH and the water here on the St. Francis spillway is flowing backwards! So it's going up the OTHER side of the levee and flooding Payneway!

To my knowledge, there has not been a levee break, but the water is rising due to the water flowing in the opposite direction of how the levee system was designed. I marked this flow with red arrows.

If you are wondering what it looks like when it is not flooded, here is an image from this time last year:
So, until the water starts flowing in the right direction, the flooding is going to persist in Payneway. Odd situation that will hopefully end soon.

Big thanks to Hatton for explaining the levee system in that area.



norwoodc said...

Thank you for posting this. The images make it so much easier to understand. I heard reports it will take at least 2 weeks for it to subside. Is that right?

Ryan said...

That is very possible. I hope not, but it is possible

norwoodc said...

Thank you for posting this. The images make it so much easier to comprehend.