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High Water Impacts Mississippi Reservoirs: Grenada Lake Flows Enter Spillway

Published May 12, 2019


The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Vicksburg District notified local authorities and emergency management personnel May 10 that flows from Grenada Lake, located near Interstate 55 in north Mississippi, were forecasted to enter the project’s spillway within the week.

Grenada Lake is one of four flood control reservoirs in Mississippi maintained and operated by the Vicksburg District. The district’s four flood control reservoirs in Mississippi – Arkabutla, Enid, Grenada and Sardis lakes – are used to hold runoff, or excess rainwater, as a flood-prevention measure.

Rainfall over the northern portion of the state of Mississippi impacted the elevations at the reservoirs.

Since notifying local authorities and emergency management personnel, flows from the reservoir at Grenada Lake began entering the project’s spillway May 10. The reservoir at Grenada Lake Dam is currently at an elevation of 232.1 feet. The project’s spillway is at an elevation of 231 feet. Any reservoir elevations above the spillway crest will pass through the project’s spillway until the reservoir pool drops below the spillway crest.

The reservoir at Enid Lake Dam is currently at an elevation of 267.8 feet, and the project’s spillway is at an elevation of 268 feet. The reservoir at Arkabutla Lake Dam is currently at an elevation of 236.1 feet, and the project’s spillway is at an elevation of 238.3 feet.

The Vicksburg District will continue to monitor water elevations throughout the region and will provide updates as more information is available. Citizens are encouraged to contact local authorities and management officials for updates about conditions in their area and should avoid activities on or near flood control works.

The four Mississippi reservoirs were authorized by the Flood Control Act of 1936, which provided a plan designed to address flooding that originated in the Yazoo Basin. The plan included a combination of lakes supplemented by levees and drainage works in the Delta area. During significant rainfall events in the basin, USACE uses the lakes to hold back water from further contributing to flows downstream in the basin. When downstream stages are low enough to permit, additional water is released from the lakes to assure as much storage in the lakes as possible for the control of subsequent floods.

Previously in 2019, flows from Arkabutla Lake entered the project’s spillway, while Grenada, Enid and Sardis were under surveillance due to high water. As of May 9, all four reservoirs are at least 14 feet higher than normal for this time of year.

High water has also meant limited availability for some recreation opportunities at the lakes. Some boat ramps, as well as a few low-lying picnic areas and camp sites, have been closed due to high water. Additionally, all beaches at the four lakes are closed due to high water and are likely to remain closed through the Memorial Day weekend.

For further information, the field office at each lake can be contacted at the following phone numbers:

Arkabutla Lake            (662) 562-6261

Sardis Lake                  (662) 563-4531

Enid Lake                    (662) 563-4571

Grenada Lake              (662) 226-5911

The Vicksburg District encompasses a 68,000-square-mile area across portions of Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana. The primary mission of the Mississippi lakes is to provide flood risk reduction for 4,425 square miles in north Mississippi. With approximately 3.2 million visitors each year, the lakes also contribute approximately $82 million into the local economy. For more information, visit www.mvk.usace.army.mil.


Reagan Lauritzen

Release no. 19-012