San Jacinto River Authority Beginning Controlled Releases
by San Jacinto River Authority staff
With approximately six inches of rainfall across the watershed over the past 24 hours, the Lake Conroe water level has risen over seven inches and exceeded normal pool elevation. SJRA operations personnel at the Lake Conroe dam are now beginning controlled releases to slowly pass a portion of the inflows coming into the lake.
Fortunately, Lake Conroe was over six inches low when the event started and was able to absorb a significant amount of rainfall without any release. Releases from the lake will begin gradually, and the lake will continue to be allowed to slowly rise, which means the operation of the dam will buffer the amount of flow that would otherwise enter the river.
The operational guidelines for Lake Conroe take many factors into consideration and are designed to protect the dam itself and to ensure that the peak rate of flow released from the dam is LOWER than the peak flow coming into the lake. By allowing Lake Conroe’s level to rise during the event, the peak flow going down the river is reduced. So even though Lake Conroe was not designed for flood control, the ake Conroe dam has significantly REDUCED downstream flooding for every major storm in the watershed since it was constructed in 1973.
At this time, it is impossible to predict how far or how fast the lake will rise. There is still a lot of rain in the forecast, but how quickly the rain falls has a tremendous impact on lake level rise. As a precaution, residents around Lake Conroe are encouraged to trailer or secure any boats or other watercraft.
Anyone interested in monitoring Lake Conroe levels, releases, rainfall totals, or stream flows can visit www.sjra.net and click on the link for “Lake and River Conditions.” This link can be found near the top right corner of the home page where current lake conditions are listed.
We will also post press releases and other updates on our home page. For additional information visit our website at www.sjra.net or like SJRA on Facebook @SanJacintoRiverAuthority