Freshet

Notice of Gate Change

The operator of the Nicola Lake Dam has informed the City that a gate change will be made today to increase Nicola River flows from ~13m^3/s to approximately 20m^3/s.

The Nicola river as it flows through Merritt is fed by the combination of the outflow of Nicola Lake (governed by the dam), and the outflow from Clapperton Creek (uncontrolled, and responsive entirely to the weather).  Clapperton Creek is flowing at ~4.25m^3/s, so the combined flow through Merritt will be ~24.25m^3/s.  We anticipate that this will cause river levels to rise by approximately 7 inches.

There is still plenty of storage capacity in Nicola Lake and this increase in flows is being made to ensure the lake doesn’t fill too quickly and to preserve capacity in the event that we see precipitation in the next few weeks.  There is no risk of flooding with this change, though we do anticipate that groundwater levels will rise.  Residents in the lowest lying areas may need to turn on sump pumps.

Staff at the City and the Ministry continue to keep water levels under constant observation. Subject to any potential changes in weather, no further gate changes are expected this week.

For More Information Contact

Greg Lowis
Director of Corporate Services
City of Merritt
Phone: (250) 378-8614
Email:  glowis@merritt.ca

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