Corps: Oahe Reservoir Will Have Sufficient Water; No Problems at Gavins Point
PIERRE – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says there will be enough water available in the Oahe Reservoir for local use despite a continuing drought.
KCCR reports that less water is expected in the reservoir because of the drought and below-normal snowpack.
The corps’ Jody Farhat says more water will be left in the Oahe Reservoir for the spring fish spawn.
Higher flows will be discharged from the reservoir later in summer, but Farhat says there will be enough left for recreation and irrigation.
Farhat says decisions made will be made on water management issues such as the extension of boat ramps.
The corps says winter runoff into the river above Sioux City, Iowa, will only be 80 percent of normal for this year.
Meanwhile, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials say they’ve found no indication of major problems with Gavins Point Dam related to the 2011 flood.
The Yankton Press and Dakotan reports (http://bit.ly/Yoq6LU) that discharges at the dam were increased Tuesday during a spillway flow test to assess the current condition of the spillway.
The corps is continuing to investigate potential flood damage to the structure. Sonar tests last year detected anomalies below the spillway.
The corps’ John Bertino says Gavins Point is a unique spillway that it is submerged most of the time, so it’s more difficult to evaluate than upriver structures.
Bertino, the chief of the engineering division for the Omaha District, says the corps is stepping through its normal process to gather information.
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