SHREVEPORT, La. (AP) — A rising Red River was covering streets and, in some instances, entering homes in northwestern Louisiana on Saturday.
The Red was more than five feet above its 30-foot flood stage in Shreveport and was expected to crest there Sunday at more than 36 feet.
Caddo Sheriff's spokeswoman Cindy Chadwick said at least a dozen Caddo Parish homes had flooded — some with at least a foot of water — along the Red or its tributaries. There was flooding reported on major Shreveport area thoroughfares and scattered evacuations in some areas.
"There are other areas where, if you don't have water in your home, it's knocking at your door," Chadwick said.
The Louisiana National Guard is also working to help parish officials protect areas near the Clyde Fant Pkwy. and Jimmy Davis Hwy. in Shreveport from the rising Red River flood waters.
Engineers are working to build a 800 ft. barrier to fortify a concrete wall and further protect the area from the river's crest, while guardsmen brought 200,000 bottles of water to help back up the drinking supply in Northwest Louisiana.
Chadwick said officials were taking steps to protect water treatment plants and other infrastructure.
Gov. Bobby Jindal has activated up to 200 Louisiana National Guard members to help the state and local emergency effort. The governor's office says 255,000 sandbags are being distributed in Bossier, Caddo and other parishes along the Red.
An RV park in Bossier Parish has been evacuated. Bossier City officials say ramps from the Shreveport Barksdale Bridge that leads to the Arthur Ray Teague Parkway have been closed because of flooding on the east side of the parkway.
Water is expected to remain high for several days. More above-flood-stage crests are expected further downriver later in the week. The Red was expected to crest at 38.5 feet on June 9 at Coushatta, more than seven feet above flood stage. At Alexandria, the Red was expected to cause moderate flooding when it crests next Saturday at 38 feet, six feet above flood stage.