"In fact, the top of the "fountain" is almost certainly equal to the water level on the "canal" side of the levee, minus "pipe friction". "
Apparently I misunderstood your original post. I understood it to say that your "fountains" were reversed. That is, storm drains 15 feet below sea level dumping water over a levee 15 feet above sea level for a total rise of 30 feet.
If that is the case all of the writings of Stokes, Navier and Bernoulli concerning fluid dynamics will have to be altered due to Katrina.
Being an E.E. makes me as far from an M.E. or C.E. as a fisherman, but 35 years ago all engineers were exposed to fluid dynamics.
Ok, I've got you. No, the leaking drains were letting water "through" the levee with the water coming up on the inside. Yes, we would have significant revision at hand if the reverse were true.
I'm not sure what the mechanism for the storm sewer leaks is, because they are below the level of the water outside the levee all the time but only leaked when the river ( in the case I cited) was at flood stage. Some sort of flowcock failure but I don't have any details there.
OT but memorable, for some reason standing under the levee was not nearly as intimidating as standing atop the levee and feeling it sway underneath me. It might have been being able to see the water, lapping near my feet on the river side, less than a foot from the top of the emergency sandbags, and looking down on the rooftops on the other.
Interesting story there. They let the kids out of high school because the city was "doomed" and the kids saved the city, moving something like more than three quarters of the necessary sandbags.
A friend and I, left with nothing to do after the pubs closed locally, made the three hour roadtrip for a visual inspection. Our engineering criteria were met, and we managed to escape with both our lives and a commemorative sandbag.
Yes, we were, in addition to statics, dynamics, and thermodynamics. Strangely the only EE course the ME's, and I think CE's had to take was a two semester "intro to EE", whereas we were taking the same fundamental engineering mechanics, fluids and thermo as they were. But of course we got better grades in their courses than they did. :)