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Lake Okeechobee To Reach Near Historic Heights After Irma

The sun sets behind the lock and dam on Lake Okeechobee and St. Lucie Canal. Photo by Amy Green

Water managers expect Lake Okeechobee will rise to near historic levels after Irma.

They will begin sending water east Friday.

Lake Okeechobee is expected to reach as many as 17 feet as storm water continues to drain from central Florida to the Kissimmee River and eventually the state’s largest lake.

That would be the highest level in more than 10 years. But Laureen Borochaner of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says the lake’s dike is in good shape after Irma.

“We had no observed seepage or piping, and the only thing that we did observe was limited erosion, what we would consider minor erosion associated with storm surge and wave action.”

Managers say dike inspections will increase as the water rises and that at more than 18 feet the dike is considered untested. They say they will send water east because the west is at capacity.

 

Amy Green, 90.7 News.

 


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Amy Green

About Amy Green

Reporter and Producer

Amy Green covers the environment for 90.7 News. She is an award-winning journalist who has worked as a regular contributor to NPR, PEOPLE, Newsweek, The New York Times, The Christian Science Monitor and other top news organizations. She is a Florida native with a zeal for chronicling the spurts and pains of ... Read Full Bio »

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