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Cornelius News

Watch that dive: Lake is low!

Low lake levels prompt police warning

Aug. 9. By Dave Vieser. The lowest lake levels on Lake Norman since the 2008 drought have prompted officials to close some launching ramps and issue warnings to boaters. As of Friday Aug. 7, the lake level was 95.5, compared with a target level of 98. This level is almost 4.5 feet below full pond. Full pond elevation is equivalent to the top of the flood gates at gated impoundments and the top of the open spillway at lakes that do not have gates.

According to Duke Energy spokeswoman Jennifer Jabon, the low levels have placed Lake Norman in a stage one drought status, meaning voluntary water conservation measures are being strongly suggested. As a result of the low levels, Mecklenburg County has closed two of the six boating ramps at Blythe Landing.

Meanwhile, the Cornelius Police Lake Patrol Division has issued a warning to all boaters and personal watercraft operators on Lake Norman to be especially cautious. Low lake levels create dangerous conditions as previously underwater obstacles appear on or near the surface, according to lake patrol. “We recommend the use of a GPS or depth finder to help with navigating the lake safely.  Extreme caution is advised to watch out for rocks and stumps that are now too close to the surface.”