USACE updates water releases at Falls Lake on May 3

Published May 3, 2017

WILMINGTON, N.C. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Wilmington District began gradually increasing releases at Falls Lake this past Saturday, 29 April. Recent rain had pushed lake levels at Falls Lake up nearly 10 feet.  Falls Lake has only reached levels this high during five other storm events since it was completed. The Corps must make releases to reduce high lake levels caused by flood waters that were held back following this event. 

 Releases have been increased each day since 29 April, with releases having been increased to near 4000 cubic feet per second (cfs) on Tuesday morning, 2 May.  Additional increases to 5000 cfs were implemented on Wednesday morning, 3 May, and expect increases to 6000 cfs on Thursday morning, 4 May.  “The Corps has been working with the Southeast River Forecast Center (RFC) to evaluate the effects of planned releases from Falls on downstream river levels. The Corps is closely coordinating with the RFC and county emergency management offices to make them aware of any effects from our planned releases on downstream communities. These higher 6000 cfs releases are expected to last for about one week, with 4000 cfs releases expected for about another week after that,” said Chief Public Affairs Officer Lisa Parker.

 Downstream river stages are generally expected to be below moderate flood stage by the time these higher releases from Falls reach downstream areas, and river levels should continue to remain below moderate flood stage. The Corps will continue to monitor downstream conditions and coordinate our release plans with the RFC.  Our planned releases are reflected in the official river forecasts prepared by the National Weather Service. Periodic News Releases will be distributed to the media and the public to keep them apprised of our operational changes.

Release no. 18-017