Markland Dam: ‘Rising quickly’

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With all of the recent heavy rain in the area (see page 16 of today’s edition), water levels at the Markland Dam were continuing to go up as of Wednesday morning.

“The levels are rising pretty quickly,” Christy Kloepfer, project navigation assistant at the Markland Dam and Locks said. “We opened up 36-feet of gate on the dam this morning.”

The water levels Wednesday morning were 12.5-feet on the upper part of the dam; and 45.3-feet on the lower portion of the dam. Flood stage on the lower side is 51-feet.

Most importantly, the level on the dam itself stood at 394-feet Wednesday morning.

At that level, workers at the dam and locks still have gates in the water, which control and restrict water flow through the dam.

If the water level of the dam rises to 480-feet, then the workers go “all out”, completely raising the gates out of the water.

“As long as we have gates in the water we can control it (the river),” Christy Kloepfer said. “Once we’re all out, then there’s nothing we can do to control the water.”