Flood Crest Heading Downriver From Cumberland, Ohio

The Nashville Engineer District’s Water Management Section said it is overseeing water releases at its dams in the Cumberland River Basin in the wake of a “significant rain event” February 6 within the basin.

Anthony Rodino, Nashville District Water Management Section chief, said the basin received widespread 3 to 4 inches in the basin, with some areas seeing more than 6 inches of rain. As a result, the Corps is operating its dams to pass as much water as possible at the run of the river projects on the Cumberland River, holding water where possible at its larger storage reservoirs.

“The entire system is operated in a coordinated fashion. We’re limiting releases from our dams like Wolf Creek Dam, Dale Hollow Dam, Center Hill Dam and J. Percy Priest Dam, while we are passing water through at Cordell Hull Dam, Old Hickory Dam, Cheatham Dam and Barkley Dam,” Rodino said.

Complicating the balancing act, more rain was expected in the region early in the following week, and a flood crest is also making its way down the Ohio River that is expected to reach the Mississippi River in several days.

Water managers with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Great Lakes and Ohio River Division are working with district water managers to manage releases from Barkley Dam on the Cumberland River. They are also working with the Tennessee Valley Authority to manage releases from Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River. The aim is to to reduce impacts as the flood crest on the Ohio River makes its way to the Mississippi River.

The Corps of Engineers continues to coordinate regional flood-control operation with multiple offices with the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, TVA, National Weather Service, and U.S. Geological Survey.

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