Waltonville City Lake drained - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Waltonville City Lake drained

By Arnold Wyrick - bio | email

WALTONVILLE, IL (KFVS) -The heavy rains on Sunday morning were more than the Waltonville City Lake dam could bear.

A gaping hole formed in the dam dumping thousands of gallons of water a minute onto Illinois Route 148.

"This is potentially a dangerous situation," said District 9 Engineer Keith Miley, with the Illinois Department of Transportation.

"The Waltonville reservoir has a six to eight foot hole in it with water running through. We've shut down Illinois 148 at this time."

With the road closed city leaders met with a hydrologist from the Illinois Department of Transportation to decide what to do.

"It does look like we're going to have more rain, that is not going to help this situation. We're suggesting to the city take a look at breeching the spillway to relief some of the pressure off the dam," said Miley.

Shortly past 3 p.m. Sunday the breeching process began, by first leveling off the initial hole in the dam. And then digging another one to help alleviate pressure off the first hole.

"Losing the lake in town we're going to lose a lot of recreation in the area," said Donnie Laird of Waltonville.

"A lot of people use the lake for fishing and it's close to the ball fields. It was a pretty nice little recreational spot."

But, that won't be the same in the future according to Mayor Randy Dees.

"We don't have the money to fix the dam at this time, and the spillway was leaking anyway. So we're just going to let it drain and then use the dirt from the dam to fill back in the lake," said Mayor Dees.

The water from the Waltonville City Lake will drain into the Big Muddy River and eventually end up in Rend Lake.



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