Debris enters Lake Pend Oreille, boaters should use caution

Published June 29, 2016

The Corps gathers most debris from the Clark Fork before it enters the lake and stores it in the Clark Fork Drift Facility until it can be disposed. A piece of the log boom, a barrier of logs chained together to contain debris, failed late June 28 allowing at least 20 to 30 10-foot long by 1-foot diameter logs and some smaller debris to enter the upper lake.

“We dispatched a crew and temporarily patched the breach,” said Albeni Falls Dam Operations Project Manager Ryne Linehan. “We’re now focused on monitoring the structure and a permanent fix.”

Until the breach is fully repaired, the Corps advises boaters and the public to use caution, and be alert for logs and debris which can float just beneath the water.

The Corps of Engineers is the largest provider of water-based outdoor recreation in the nation. Lake Pend Oreille is one of 403 lakes and river projects in 43 states which provide a diverse range of recreational opportunities.

“Safety is a top priority at Corps lakes and we want boaters to be aware of, and on the lookout for, the debris so everyone can have a safe July 4 weekend,” Linehan said.

Release no. 16-024