Carvins Cove Dam issues Stage II warning after two feet of water flow over spillway

Local News

Copyright: Associated Press

ROANOKE COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — The Western Virginia Water Authority (WVWA) issued a Stage II notification for the Carvins Cove Dam after Wednesday’s rain resulted in two feet of water flowing over the dam’s spillway.

According to WVWA, the Stage II action level reached on Wednesday, June 17, was also reached on May 20. Officials say Stage II indicates potential failure or storm development are quickly accelerating and could result in the dam’s failure.

While the two-foot overflow into Carvins Creek does trigger the WVWA’s Emergency Action Plan for the dam, officials say the dam is not expected to fail until 14 feet of water flow over the top and that the Stage II notification does not indicate any imminent dam failure.

According to WFXR Chief Meteorologist John Carroll, flash flooding is possible for areas downstream from Carvins Cove Dam if the dam starts to fail.

“The Flash Flood Watch is issued as standard protocol based on the Emergency Action Plan in place for the Carvins Cove Dam,” Carroll said. “In other words when the water is flowing over the spillway at that level (two feet), this watch is issued.”

“The Western Virginia Water Authority will continue to closely monitor the reservoir level, spillway flow and forecasted precipitation and notify emergency personnel and residents of any changes,” Wednesday’s alert stated. “Stage III, which is triggered by four (4) feet of water flowing over the dam, is not expected to be reached.”

For those living in low-lying areas below the dam, they are encouraged to be prepared to move to higher ground, follow any evacuation instructions from Roanoke County emergency officials, and not to drive across flooded roads.

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