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Flow possible over Inks Dam as generator goes offline

Inks Dam

Even without rainfall or significant precipitation, some water could flow over the Inks Dam spillway now that the Lower Colorado River Authority has taken the facility’s hydroelectric generator offline. The generator will remain offline through mid-May as crews upgrade nearby transmission lines. Photo courtesy of LCRA

The Lower Colorado River Authority is taking the Inks Dam hydroelectric generator offline through May, which could lead to water flowing over the dam even without rainfall or flooding.

Crews are upgrading and hardening a nearby transmission line, necessitating the generator outage.

“During these periods, inflows to Inks Lake could cause the lake level to rise above its normal operating ranges and water may flow over the spillway at Inks Dam from time to time,” according to an LCRA statement. “If we receive substantial inflows from rain over Inks Lake or its watershed and larger amounts of water will begin flowing over the spillway, LCRA would issue an alert through the Flood Operations Notifications Service, or FONS, a free service that will notify subscribers by phone, email, or text when flood operations are underway at any of the dams in the Highland Lakes.”

Residents can subscribe on the FONS webpage

Inks Dam does not have floodgates. It was designed for water to flow over the spillway when needed.

“If the rate of rise continues at its current rate, Inks Lake could reach the crest of the dam’s spillway over the next couple of weeks, and a small amount of water could flow over the spillway,” according to the statement. “We would then expect the lake to remain in its upper range, with small amounts of water flowing over the spillway periodically, through mid-May.”

LCRA will post updates on its River Operations Report.

daniel@thepicyaune.com