There is too much water and no more room to spare at Salamonie Reservoir. Due to heavy rains over the past week, Salamonie Lake on the Salamonie River has risen to a current elevation of 791.4 feet. The lake level will continue to rise and reach its spillway pool of elevation 793 feet today,Sunday, June 28.
Once the 793 feet is reached, the dam’s outlet works will be operated so that the amount of water released from the lake is equal to the amount flowing in. Water that cannot be passed through the conduit will flow through the spillway. Project releases will begin to be increased this evening at approximately midnight, June 28 at a rate of about 1,200 cubic feet per second (cfs) per hour until discharge is equal to inflow, which is estimated will peak at approximately 8,000 cfs. This release is approximately 2,000 cfs greater than Salamonie’s normal high release. The 8,000 cfs release rate will be maintained until the lake level drops below elevation 793.0.
The system is designed to minimize flood damages by storing water caused by heavy rains. The spillway is designed to provide a safe path for the excess flows once the dam reaches maximum capacity. The dam is structurally sound and operating as intended. Inspectors are on site and the dam is currently staffed 24 hours. When this increased discharge flow occurs, downstream areas may be impacted. Areas of these potential impacts are along the Salamonie and Wabash River in Wabash, Miami and Cass Counties. Farther downstream counties will experience smaller impacts as the river capacity is much higher.
This is a collaborative effort. The Corps is working with local and state emergency operation managers and the agencies are communicating this information to keep people affected by this situation safe and informed.