General Overview


Pool 8 of the Upper Mississippi River (UMR) is the area between Lock and Dam 7 at river mile 702, near La Crescent, Minnesota, and Lock and Dam 8 at River mile 679.2, at Genoa, Wisconsin. Pool 8 includes portions of the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge, the south end French Island, and the city of LaCrosse, Wisconsin which is highly populated and including homes and boat houses on the shoreline of Pool 8.


Primary Response Goals

1.  In general, any spilled oil product should be diverted and kept in the main channel of the Mississippi River. Then, if possible, the oil should be diverted with boom and collection should take place on the main shore

2.  A spill flowing over the Lock and Dam 7 (Onalaska) Spillway on the Black River should be collected at the Spillway or at the I-90 bridges. If spilled material travels beyond these points into the populated areas downstream, public health may be adversely impacted, as well as high value property.

3.  A spill lower on the Black River should be contaminated and collected before reaching the Mississippi River. Below La Crosse, the river branches out into numerous side channels. This presents both a threat to sensitive habitat as well as greatly increasing the difficulty of containing the spill

4.  Notify Xcel energy of a spill near the confluence of the Mississippi and Black Rivers, determine if action should be taken to protect the power plant water intake.


To further explain the techniques used above, refer to the image below labeled 686a – Eagle Island in the GRP. The strategy for this location is to place a boom across the notch to keep the spilled product from entering the Eagle Island backwaters.



If a spill occurs, it is essential to notify federal, state, and local authorities within 24-hours of the spill. To inform federal authorities, call the National Response Center (NRC) at (800) 424-8802. To contact state authorities in Wisconsin, please call (800) 943-0003. To reach state authorities in Minnesota, please call (800) 422-0798. To contact local authorities, please call 911. For more detailed information, refer to the Upper Mississippi River Spill Response Plan.



Click to Download Pool 8 GRP

If you choose to download the Pool 8 GRP files to use them locally, click on the link above. The download should start automatically, or your browser will prompt you to approve and save the file. The ZIP file is 196 MB, so it may take between 10-20 minutes to download depending on your Internet speed. Once the file is downloaded, unzip the files and open the Pool8_GRP_web.exe file.

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