Due to heavy rainfall, and forecasts for yet more wet weather, water will be released from the Table Rock Dam spillways starting on Tuesday, as well as from other lakes on the White River system.
According to a statement Monday afternoon from the Little Rock District of the Army Corps of Engineers, the spillway releases are necessary because of National Weather Service forecasts for the White River Basin over the next 72 hours. The lakes are also getting close to their top flood storage levels.
The Corps currently plans to start making spillway releases from Beaver and Table Rock dams on Tuesday, and from Bull Shoals on Wednesday. In addition, the Corps also plans to increase releases from Norfork Dam on Wednesday. The releases will be based off rainfall runoff amounts.
"Corps policy requires its staff to operate the lakes based upon runoff from rain that has actually fallen and can be measured," said Chief of Hydraulics & Technical Services Branch, Mike Biggs in the press release. "Operating the dams based upon 'water on the ground' allows engineers to make data-based decisions."
The Corps is advising areas downstream of the dams to begin assessing their respective plans and to begin taking the proper precautions. Landowners with belongings near the river's edge should also begin making plans for high water.
The lakes have nearly used up their flood storage capacity. As of Sunday afternoon at 4 p.m., Table Rock Lake was at 928.56 feet, about 13.5 feet above normal. It’s about 2.5 feet below its top flood pool level. Beaver Lake (at 3 p.m.) was at 1128.63, about seven feet above normal, and about 1.5 feet below its top flood pool level. Bull Shoals Lake is at 694.03. That’s about 32 feet above normal, and less than a foot below top flood pool level.