US Army Corps of Engineers
Kansas City District Website

News Release Manager

Dive operations underway at Harlan County Dam

Published June 25, 2014
Harlan County Dam

Harlan County Dam

REPUBLICAN CITY, Neb.,— The Kansas City District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ is scheduled to perform dive operations June 25 to remove construction debris from the lake which occurred during strong wind storms June 14-15.

A high wind storm and associated wave action destroyed the temporary construction work platform used to install anchors on the dam. The temporary construction platform is now at the bottom of the lake in front of the interior sluice gates used for normal lake releases.

Dive operations will begin with clearing one gateway so normal water releases can be made as soon and as safely as possible. The dive operation could last for several weeks due to the low visibility of the lake, the amount of metal debris, and the dismantling and removal of the debris below the water surface.

Maintenance work, which included installing anchors on the face of the dam, was impacted from the storms. The anchors allow stoplogs to be deployed so repairs to the Tainter spillway gates can be made without lowering the lake level. The Tainter gates are primarily used to make large flood releases when the lake level is high.

The Corps of Engineers has not been able to make normal releases as requested by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation for downstream irrigation purposes due to concerns about damaging the outlet works and the uncertainty of gate reclosure. The Corps is currently releasing approximately 36 cubic feet of water per second through a low flow by-pass, and 300 cfs has been requested.

The road across the dam will continue to have an 8-foot-6-inch wide lane restriction in place through the Fourth of July weekend as work to remove the debris continues. 

For questions, please contact the Public Affairs Office at (816) 389-3486.

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Release no. PA-2014-30