USACE monitoring releases at Schafer Dam and Tule River Spillway

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Sacramento District
Published March 14, 2023

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District is closely monitoring Schafer Dam and Lake Success in connection with the ongoing severe weather event.

With Lake Success already exceeding its gross pool capacity of 84,095 acre-feet and more rain on the way, releases from both the Schafer Dam outlet works and the Tule River Spillway are expected to increase over the next 48 hours.

Schafer Dam is not currently at risk of being damaged or overtopping as, even at capacity, lake levels are well below the top of dam. However, USACE teams are now monitoring the dam and spillway around the clock and are coordinating with state and local partners to update release projections multiple times per day.

The current combined release through the outlet works and spillway is approximately 6,000 cubic feet of water per second as of Monday evening and is expected to increase to 12,500 cfs by Wednesday evening as rain continues to feed into waterways. Forecasted rain and increasing water releases may cause localized flooding downstream of Schafer Dam.  

A project to increase the capacity of Lake Success by 28,000 acre-feet is currently in construction. Construction equipment has been removed from the area and the spillway can function as designed even though modifications are not complete.

Local residents should monitor local and county authorities for the latest information, resources, and evacuation warnings.  This will not only help ensure your safety, but also maintain availability of emergency resources during this critical time.

For ongoing emergency information, please visit:
Tulare County Office of Emergency Services:
Tulare County – Emergencies:
Tulare County – Evacuation Notices: 
California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services:

To receive emergency alerts directly from the County of Tulare and the City of Porterville, sign up for AlertTC at

Ken Wright
(916) 557-5100
(916) 502-2673 (cell)

Release no. 23-010