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Forced Drainage System 4-8 Levee

  • Forced Drainage Levee 1

    Forced Drainage Levee 1

  • Forced Drainage Levee 2

    Forced Drainage Levee 2

  • Forced Drainage Levee 3

    Forced Drainage Levee 3

  • Forced Drainage Levee 4

    Forced Drainage Levee 4


On June 30th, 2003, Tropical Storm Bill reached a peak intensity of 60 mph (95 km/h), one hour before making landfall in southwestern Terebonne Parish, Louisiana. The low-lying town of Montegut, Louisiana, was severely flooded when the hurricane overtopped the local levee by 6 inches. The Terebonne Parish Office of Public Works proposed construction of an emergency floodwall on the Forced Drainage System 4-8 Levee.

Project Scope

The original levee was constructed using poor soils and debris. Therefore, eliminating piping and through-seepage was the major objective in the levee improvement project. It was determined that driving steel sheet piling into the center of the levee would be the most effective solution to prevent seepage and piping. The sheet piling solution was also the most cost effective. Later in the design process, vinyl sheet piling was approved as an acceptable alternative material and was ultimately chosen over steel for its lifecycle and low cost. Due to the cost savings provided over steel, the project scope was adjusted from 7,000 linear feet to 14,000 linear feet.


The performance of the wall has been excellent, even after the effects of six hurricanes, including Katrina. The piping and through-seepage has been completely eliminated. The sheet pile installation was inspected by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the study of The Long-Term Applications of Vinyl Sheet Piling. (AUG 2003)


Vinyl sheet piling was installed using a steel mandrel and a vibratory hammer. The mandrel was used at the leading edge of the bottom of the sheet pile to aid in penetration through resistant materials.

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