ILLINOIS RIVER BASIN - HIGH WATER ADVISORY FOR RECREATIONISTIL

ISSUED: 6:00AM - SATURDAY, MAY 23, 2020

Hello Neighbors, Friends and Team,

ILLINOIS RIVER WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS ARE ABOVE NORMAL CONDITIONS THIS MORNING.

RUNOFF FROM RAINFALL YESTERDAY WILL PUSH ILLINOIS RIVER BASIN WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS TO NEAR ACTION STAGE TODAY.

NON-SWIMMERS SHOULD NOT SWIM OR FLOAT TODAY.

CHILDREN SHOULD NOT FLOAT TODAY.

THOSE LACKING STRONG PADDLING SKILLS SHOULD BE PAIRED WITH EXPERIENCED PADDLERS/FLOATERS UTILIZING RAFTS AND/OR WAIT UNTIL ANOTHER WEEKEND TO FLOAT WHEN WATER LEVELS AND FLOWS HAVE RETURNED TO NORMAL CONDITIONS.

THE USE OF CANOES AND KAYAKS IS DISCOURAGED TODAY.

FLINT CREEK STREAM GAGES ARE REPORTING FLOWS 6X’S FASTER THAN NORMAL THIS MORNING. SWIMMERS AND WADERS SHOULD AVOID THE LOW-WATER DAM LOCATED BELOW THE US412 HWY BRIDGE IN SOUTHERN DELAWARE COUNTY.

THESE HIGHER FLOWS CREATE AN UNDERTOW THAN CAN TRAP SWIMMERS AND WADERS IN A BOIL/RE-CIRCULATING WATER BELOW THAT DAM.

THE LOW-WATER DAM GAGE SITE IS REPORTING CURRENT LEVEL OF 7.10 FEET WITH 555CFS FLOW (249,750 GALLONS A MINUTE FLOW… NORMAL CONDITIONS 91CFS/40,950GPM).

PROJECTED CRESTS:

· WATTS Gage-US59 Highway Bridge, Crested 2:00am this morning peaking at 7.54ft and 3,802cfs flow. At 5:00am this morning level and flow had fallen to 7.45ft and 3,710cfs;

· CHEWEY Gage-Hampton Bridge, approximately 7.5ft Crest anticipated Saturday Mid-day;

· TAHLEQUAH Gage-US62 Highway Bridge, approximately 8.5ft Crest Saturday Night;

· ELDON Gage-Barren Fork Creek/SH51 Highway Bridge, is nearing Crest this morning, presently 7.82ft with 628cfs flow; and,

· KANSAS Gage-Flint Creek/US412 Highway Bridge, Crest Yesterday, Friday Evening, peaking at 7.32ft and 792cfs flow. At 5:00am this morning level and flow had fallen to 7.10ft and 555cfs.

IMPORTANT HIGH WATER CONSIDERATIONS:

1. Floaters, fishermen and swimmers exercise caution this weekend.

2. Wear life preservers, protective footwear and other suitable clothing.

3. Never swim or boat alone. Stay within sight of companions.

4. Boaters inform family members or others what stream reach you’re floating and when you plan to return from your trip.

5. Floaters beware, a number of flood events have occurred since the last float season. Fallen trees and debris may have accumulated in turns and runs that may pose navigational hazards.

6. If in doubt about the stream reach to be traveled, stop and get out on land to scout a safe pathway to use to float through, around meanders and other areas where debris and

fallen trees present strainers that let water pass through yet will trap and hold a boat/swimmer. In areas with swift water, portage your boat around navigational hazards.

7. Please adhere to COVID-19 Guidance from Oklahoma State Department of Health and CDC when enjoying Oklahoma Scenic Rivers Areas.

Attached above is a listing of water levels and flow/discharge for Illinois River Basin Stream Gaging Stations (as of 5:00am).

Additional updates will be published as river conditions warrant.

Thank you,

Ed Fite

Vice-President for Rivers Operations and Water Quality

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