GRDA offers reminders for safety around dams

Langley – The Grand River Dam Authority is cautioning the public that, due to the seasonal drawdown of Grand Lake, spillway gates will likely be open at Pensacola Dam’s east spillways throughout the Labor Day weekend. At press time, nine floodgates were open on the dam’s east spillways, between the communities of Disney and Tia Juana. The gates are open to facilitate the drawdown of Grand Lake to elevation 741 feet. This annual drawdown is a requirement under GRDA’s license to operate Pensacola Dam, issued by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in 1992. Because of the open spillway gates, and the amount of visitors expected in the area over the long holiday weekend, GRDA offers these safety reminders:

NOTIFICATION: Signs, buoys, sirens, fencing and flashing lights are all intended to notify those in the area when floodgates are open, genera¬tors are operating or water is rising swiftly.

SIGNS: Posted at GRDA hydroelectric facility (Pen¬sacola Dam, Robert S. Kerr Dam, and the Salina Pumped Storage Project) to warn of extreme danger in floodgate areas. Please be aware of other signs near GRDA facili-ties that notify you of no trespassing areas, no diving areas, or unstable footing.

BUOYS: Red buoys and cabling above and below spillway gates and hydroelectric power¬house restrict access to dangerous areas associated with power generation or floodgate releases.

FLASHING LIGHTS: At hydroelectric facilities, the flashing lights are initiated when floodgates are opened or generation is initiated.

FENCING: In place to identify borders and to restrict access to certain areas near the hydroelectric facilities.

SIRENS: These are located at various locations on the hydroelectric facilities and are utilized prior to the operation of hydro¬electric generators and/or floodgates. For more information about lake safety, visit GRDA online at