Keep cautious respect for Miss. RiverPublished 12:01am Wednesday, April 24, 2013
The old saying April showers bring May flowers is certainly rooted in truth, but for our community April showers also bring a rising tide of concern, particularly when the showers are north of us.
We’ve often said that Natchez, Vidalia and the rest of the Miss-Lou are intertwined with the Mississippi River.
The community we call home wouldn’t exist as we know it if it were not for the mighty river that flows past.
And so it is that each spring as the temperature to our north begins to heat up and melt away winter snow that all eyes begin to keep a watch on the river.
Weather forecasters and river hydrologists suggest that the river will rise slightly above flood stage in a couple of weeks, cresting at the 49-foot mark on the Natchez river gauge. If that prediction comes true and proves to be the highest level we see this year, our community will have few worries.
Flood stage in our community only concerns a smattering of residents who live in extremely low-lying areas. While such water is an inconvenience for them, it’s not unexpected this time of year.
But seasoned residents know that forecasts can sometimes be wrong and, quite frankly, Mother Nature can decide to wreak havoc on the forecasts if a few well-placed weather systems cause high rain amounts to be dumped to our north.
Residents in our area learned during the Great Flood of 2011 just how amazingly powerful the river can become as she swelled to record levels, threatening lives and destroying some local property.
Since that time, our cautious respect for the power of the river remains, and all of us should pay attention to the river as we enter the high-water season.