HIAWASSEE, Ga. – Rainfall amounts were 140 percent above normal in 2018, with run-off amounts 200 percent higher than average in the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) River Management area.
TVA manages the 652 mile long Tennessee River and its numerous tributaries, incorporating a series of 49 dams to meet vital public needs in six key areas: navigation, flood damage reduction, power production, water quality, water supply, and recreation.
“For the week before Christmas, rainfall averaged two inches in the eastern Valley and 1.4 inches in the western Valley,” said James Everett , the senior manager for TVA’s River Forecast Center, “We began spilling and sluicing at several locations the day after Christmas to increase flows and increase flood storage capacity, and that will likely continue into the new year.”
Everett explained that TVA is spilling or sluicing this week through the gates at South Holston, Wilbur, Cherokee, Douglas, Norris, Fontana, Apalachia, Ocoee 3, Great Falls, Fort Loudoun, Watts Bar, Chickamunga, Nickajack, Guntersville,Wheeler, Wilson, Pickwick, and Kentucky reservoirs.
Everett said that most dams along the main stem of the Tennessee River have been in spill operation since mid-October and will likely be spilling well into 2019.