- Associated Press - Tuesday, August 4, 2015

PERU, Ind. (AP) - Officials are slowly lowering three reservoirs that flow into the Wabash River in northern Indiana after they nearly filled to capacity during this summer’s heavy rains.

Mississinewa Lake near Peru last month reached a record high at about 40 feet above the normal summer depth. It had dropped just more than 10 feet by Tuesday. Salamonie and Roush reservoirs farther upstream also remain well above typical levels.

Crews are trying to reduce lake levels by about a foot a day now that the area has seen a stretch of less rainfall, said Scot Dahms, operations manager for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Upper Wabash Lakes division, which operates the three dams.

“The three lakes work together and they’re all functioning as designed. We’re doing the best we can to get water out of them to increase additional storage area in case we get more storms,” Dahms told the (Logansport) Pharos-Tribune (https://bit.ly/1IUQ83J ).

Boat ramps, the swimming beach and campgrounds remain closed around Mississinewa Lake because of the high water level.

The Corps of Engineers must account for water being released from all three reservoirs southwest of Fort Wayne so the Wabash River isn’t overwhelmed in communities downstream including Peru and Logansport.

“Assuming that we keep going the way we have, hopefully by the beginning of September we would be back to summer (depth),” Dahms said.

Workers at the recreational sites around Mississinewa Lake are scrambling to get the properties cleaned up in time for Labor Day weekend activities.

Mississinewa property manager Larry Brown said he hopes to have some camping areas reopened by late August, but that some electrical control panels and transformers for the campgrounds have been underwater.

He expects the swimming beach will remain closed through Labor Day, since its elevation is significantly lower than that of the campgrounds.

“As the water recedes, we’ll be able to hopefully respond quickly and get some facilities open for use,” Brown said.


Information from: Pharos-Tribune, https://www.pharostribune.com

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