MOBILE, Ala. – Because of significant rainfall, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Mobile District has implemented flood risk management operations in the Apalachicola-Chattahoochee-Flint (ACF) and Alabama-Coosa-Tallapoosa (ACT) River Basins. The reservoirs are operating for one of their primary missions, flood risk management. Portions of Northern Georgia and Alabama have received up to a foot of rain over the last few days causing the lakes and downstream rivers to rise rapidly.
“Due to recent rain events and as part of the flood damage reduction operations on the ACF, releases from Buford Dam were curtailed on Dec. 22 to prevent further flooding and impacts downstream of the project,” said Lisa Parker, Deputy Public Affairs Officer, Mobile District. “The current elevation at Lake Lanier is 1074.09 feet above mean sea level (msl). Lanier has risen over 4 feet in the past few days and the lake is expected to peak at 1075.1 msl over the upcoming week. The reservoir level at West Point Lake is expected to crest near 636.5 msl over the next few days, about 8 feet above its normal winter level. Water releases from the West Point Dam are being decreased over the next few days and is not expected to cause increased flooding. The reservoir level at Walter F. George Lake has crested at near 193.96 msl and Jim Woodruff Dam remaining below 77.0 msl,” said Parker.
On the ACT, Lake Allatoona’s current elevation is near 838.0 msl, almost 14 feet above normal winter level. “The lake level has risen over 10 feet since
December 22 and is expected to peak near 850.0 msl on Sunday, 3 Jan. 2016. Water releases from Allatoona will be increased near the end of the week to allow for current flooding conditions downstream to diminish. Expected outflow increases from Allatoona will occur after downstream river levels have peaked and receded. Carters Lake’s current elevation is 1097.5 msl and is expected to peak near 1099.0 msl on Dec. 30,” said Parker.
“The Corps continues to monitor the situation and will make necessary changes to water releases to ensure minimal impacts both upstream and downstream,” said Parker.
The Corps projected forecasts for the ACF and ACT are:
Buford Dam is storing flood water and IS expected to crest near 1075 on Dec. 31. Heavy releases will begin on 31 DEC, weather permitting, to draw the lake back down towards 1070. This could take more than a month because of forecasted above average rainfall and limited release capacity.
current releases are 38,000 cfs and will be decreased and maintained near 30,000 cfs through the rest of the week. The pool is not expected to rise back above the full summer pool of 635.0 feet as a result of the 3 day forecasted rainfall.
WALTER F. GEORGE:
Releases at Walter F. George will remain high. Current release is 80,000 cfs. We anticpate a decrease by the end of the week.
Releases are expected to stay near the minimum of 300 cfs through Sun (Jan 03) and increase to 8,500 cfs when downstream conditions improve from Carters releases.
Rereg discharge has been increased to 10,000 cfs through next week.
“Some recreation areas are currently feeling the effects of high waters, some courtesy docks at boat ramps are closed. When the lake levels are high, boating safety is a high concern. Debris may be submerged or floating in the lake causing unusual boating hazards. Boaters are urged to use extreme caution while operating their boat on the lakes,” said Parker.
More information is available on the web and we will update our website, www.sam.uscace.army.mil to indicate the open/closed status of ramps, and other recreational areas.