Dam Releases Continue Rise - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

Dam Releases Continue Rise

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The US Army Corps of Engineers is ramping up for a busy spring in North Dakota.

Flood forecasts say the Red River could hit one its five highest crests this year.

Devils Lake is projected to rise again this spring.

And the Corps is just now taking over management of Lake Darling Dam in preparation for potential flood fighting along the Mouse River.

All of those flood operations fall under the St. Paul district of the Corps.

But will the sequester hamper those operations?

The head of that district, Colonel Michael Price, says "no."

Price says federal cuts in spending blamed on the sequester will not happen when it comes to fighting high water.

(Col. Michael Price, US Army Corps of Engineers) "There's some worry about how the Corps will operate under the sequester, what the DOD is telling us to do, but as far as emergency operations and flood fighting, the Corps will be there when communities ask us to be there doing what we always have done in the past. We'll start sending our recons out this month and do what we normally do with no impact due to sequester."

By the way, this will be the last flood fight for Colonel Price. He is scheduled to leave his command in St. Paul in late June and head for a new assignment in Afghanistan.

But he says he plans to finish strong in his current assignment.

(Col. Michael Price, US Army Corps of Engineers) "I'm committed to finish up strong here in the spring because I know we have some problems in the Red River and now we're talking about the Souris so we'll be completely engaged."

Colonel Price says the Corps is committed to doing whatever is necessary to help communities facing flooding this spring.

Releases from Canadian dams on the Souris River continue to rise.

As of today, Rafferty and Alameda Dams are now discharging about 840 cubic feet per second of water.

That's up from about 700 CFS Monday.

The releases are being ramped up to make more space in reservoirs for a snow melt that's expected to be above normal.

Lake Darling Dam maintained its 700s CFS output today, but an increase is likely tomorrow.

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