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USACE Vicksburg District Thatcher Lock and Dam public notice

USACE Vicksburg District
Published Oct. 22, 2021

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Vicksburg District Thatcher Lock and Dam (L&D) pool elevation has fallen below normal pool level and is continuing to fall, due to a leak in the seal of the hinge crest gate.

This is of no danger to the integrity of the structure but will cause Thatcher’s pool to continue to fall until the pool reaches elevation 71 ft, which is the bottom elevation of the gate. Thatcher’s pool is currently at an elevation of 75.8 ft and is falling between 0.25 ft and 0.35 ft each day. If this rate continues, Thatcher’s pool will fall as low as 72.5 ft by the end of October and reach 71 ft near the first weekend in November.

Public safety is a priority.  USACE members are working diligently to understand the issue and fix it as soon as possible. Once the gate seal is exposed, USACE will perform inspections on the gate and determine what is necessary for a permanent fix. If possible, repairs will be made immediately, and the pool will be raised back to normal pool elevations.

The public is encouraged to contact local authorities and management officials for updates about conditions in their area and should be cautious while boating upstream of the structure as underwater debris (i.e. trees, pipes, stumps) could become exposed as the pool level falls and become a boating hazard. In addition, you can find pool levels for Thatcher L&D at https://go.usa.gov/xMJhU.

Completed and put in operation in 1984, Thatcher L&D creates a navigable pool all the way to Camden Arkansas, a distance of 52 river miles. Thatcher is the northern most lock & dam on the Ouachita River. 

The USACE Vicksburg District is engineering solutions to the nation’s toughest challenges. The Vicksburg District encompasses a 68,000-square-mile area across portions of Mississippi, Arkansas and Louisiana, that holds nine major river basins and incorporates approximately 460 miles of mainline Mississippi River levees. The Vicksburg District is engaged in hundreds of projects and employs approximately 1,100 personnel.

Sabrina Dalton

Release no. 21-078