Corps maintains higher water storage capacity at Success Dam

Published June 10, 2013
A view of the dam and waters of Lake Success.

A view of the dam and waters of Lake Success.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District announced June 10 it will maintain the operating restriction at Success Dam implemented in 2012. The restriction allows water storage up to 65,000 acre-feet or approximately 75 percent of the maximum capacity of the reservoir behind Success Dam. Ultimately, this could mean more water for local users during high-water months.

In late 2006, the Corps began limiting the amount of water stored in Success Lake to minimize flood risk to the public while studying safety concerns at the dam. Initial study results showed that risk associated with seismic activity and seepage is significantly lower than was earlier indicated. The Corps temporarily relaxed the pool restriction to allow more water into the reservoir in 2009, and further relaxed the restriction in 2012.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is conducting a baseline risk assessment for Success Dam - a comprehensive analysis of all the dam’s safety risks - that is scheduled to be completed in late fall 2013. When that is approved, a permanent change to the water level restriction will be considered. The Corps will then also determine if any fixes are necessary for Success Dam.

Success Dam is located on the Tule River, about five miles east and upstream of the town of Porterville. Success is an earthen dam 145 feet (44 meters) tall and 3,490 feet (1,060 meters) long. The dam and reservoir were authorized as part of the Tule River Project under the Flood Control Act of 1944 and construction was completed in 1961. The reservoir provides flood risk management, water storage and recreation benefits to the local area.

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John Prettyman

Release no. 13-040