SEATTLE – U.S. Army Corps of Engineers officials will lower White River flows from Mud Mountain Dam beginning February 11, 2018, to make repairs on the White River Diversion Dam near Buckley, Washington.
Flows about 2,000 cubic feet per second (cfs) are expected February 11 and will reduce to 350 cfs by February 14 and remain there through February 16. Flows are reduced for worker safety while making the repairs.
The Corps’ Seattle District is working with Cascade Water Alliance, which owns the diversion dam, to keep it operational until the Corps builds a new fish passage facility that is expected to be operational in 2022, depending on funding. The new facility will include a barrier structure to replace the diversion dam built in 1912.
The barrier structure helps guide fish into the Corps’ current fish passage facility that was completed in 1949. Without a working barrier dam this critical mission is jeopardized. The facility helps pass listed endangered species of Chinook salmon, steelhead, and bull trout as well as other species. In 2017 the Chinook run was a record 16,271 total. Runs consistently averaged 1,565 in the early 2000s.
Corps officials coordinate with tribal, federal and state agencies when changing water flows for this type of work. The repairs should be complete by February 17 at which point flows will slowly increase to release stored water from the reservoir.
As always, river users are cautioned that flows can change without warning.
Release no. 18-004