TVA flood operations in full swing – Pickwick 4 feet above flood stage and moving higher

By  | February 10, 2020 | Filed under: News

The TVA is moving enormous amounts of water through its 49 dams to mitigate flooding. this is Wilson Dam.

KNOXVILLE – The TVA River Forecast Center, in a media phone call this morning, predicts that Pickwick Lake is expected to continue its rise by at least 2-more feet within the next 3 days. More heavy rains are expected this week. As tributary dams are beginning to reach their maximum levels. they are expected to begin releasing more water into the main river.

Tom Barnett, River Management General Manager (Left) & James Everett, River Forecast Center Senior Manager (Right)

According to James Everett, Senior Manager of the River Forecast Center, Wheeler and Wilson Lakes are not expected to rise to a significant flood level, as that portion of the TVA System can’t hold as much flood water as Pickwick and Kentucky Lakes. Everett said that rainfall is expected to continue for the rest of this week as a storm system moves Northeast along the TVA System dmping an additional 3-to-5 inches of rain into the region, and up to 7-inches of rainfall in some regions. He noted that this rainfall, falling onto already saturated ground is expected to produce heavy runoff into the Tennessee River watershed. Water outflow in the tributary dams is being reduced to minimize runoff into the main river. At sojme point, as these dams, many of which are earthen dams, will have to re-start their outflow was their levels rise. So, even as the North Alabama rainfall diminishes, as the storm systems move out of our immediate area, the Main river will continue its heavy flow up to the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers.

As the river levels rise it is important that people in these affected areas remember some important safety tips:

Don’t drive onto water covered roads…

Avoid walking or driving through moving flood waters…

It takes only 2 feet of moving water to sweep most cars and trucks into the streaming flood…

If there is a chance of flooding at your home, don’t delay… move immediately to higher ground…

Avoid camping or parking near streams, rivers and creeks during periods of heavy rainfall…

The River Forecast Center will continue to update the flooding potential on a daily basis.


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