WARSAW — After several days of closely monitoring the output of water over the Mohawk Dam, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is putting out the maximum flow of water this morning, according to Brian Swope, facility manager.
“The downstream gages are leveling off, so we’re actually pushing the maximum outflow right now,” Swope said. “We get rid of water when we can so we have an additional storage capacity. We’re constantly adjusting the gates up and down. The dam has not been closed at all.”
There are several roads closed because of high water in the area, including Ohio 715, but the water has not reached a critical stage.
The water flowing into Mohawk Dam comes from four other dam areas — Pleasant Hill, Mohicanville, Charles Mill and the North Branch of the Kokosing River — and is released into the Walhonding River where it flows to the Muskingum River all the way into the Ohio River.
“The dam covers a great area. Our storage goes back to around Danville and Brinkhaven. It’s a pretty massive storage area,” Swope said. “We’re in pretty good shape right now. It looks like the Mohican is going to crest sometime tonight or tomorrow, so then we’ll start decreasing a bit. We’ve got plenty of storage capacity left, though.”
The recent storms have kept corps workers busy the last week and a half, adjusting the dam up and down to allow for the maximum discharge of water without overflowing the banks of rivers downstream. They had slowed the discharge level down to 8.1 feet (approximately 2,500 cubic feet of water per second) recently, but are moving back up toward the maximum output of 11.2 feet (approximately 7,000 cubic feet) now that the forecast calls for a few sunny days.
“It looks like we’re about to get some relief (from more storms) and get back to normal,” Swope said.
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