Corps reduces releases from Gavins Point Dam to lessen flood risk due to heavy rain
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Northwestern Division announced Tuesday it will reduce releases from Gavins Point Dam following heavy rain across parts of the Missouri River Basin, in an effort to lessen flood risk downstream.
"Gavins Point Dam releases will be reduced from 30,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) to 12,000 cfs in response to increased tributary flows," said Jody Farhat, chief of the Missouri River Water Management Division. "Repeated heavy rains in the Big Sioux Basin and surrounding tributaries have increased forecasted flows below the system of reservoirs."
To help reduce the peak flood stage downstream at Sioux City, Iowa, Gavins Point releases were reduced by 4,000 cfs on Sunday, June 15, 10,000 cfs Tuesday, June 17, and an additional 4,000 cfs decrease is scheduled for today, June 18.
The total volume of water stored in the mainstem reservoir system is currently 58.1 million acre-feet (MAF), occupying 2 MAF of the 16.3 MAF combined flood control storage zones.
Releases from Fort Randall Dam, the next reservoir upstream of Gavins Point, have also been cut to minimize the increase in the Gavins Point reservoir level. Fort Randall releases have been stepped down from 22,000 cfs to 11,000 cfs. Reductions in Fort Randall releases take about one and a half days to reach Gavins Point.