HIGH Lake Levels and flooded roads

Prior to the September 18th 5” rain event, the lake system was approximately 1’ above it’s designed control elevations. (due primarily to the heavy rains received the prior few afternoons. The system is designed to a 25 year storm event, which is approximately 11.5” of rain over a 72 hour period. Wednesday’s rain event was obviously well in excess of this in terms of volume to time concentration. As you pointed out you are seeing signs of the water moving and receding ever so slowly.

In response to the event, the CDD had a company dive the lake and wetland interconnect pipes and outfall structures in the problem portions of the community this morning. All facilities were clean. We do have our engineers reviewing a couple of areas to insure the structure elevations are set properly and the pipe sizing is correct.

With regards to questions about how the system works, it is all gravity fed. As the water levels rise in a lake or series of lakes it eventually gets to a height where the water will spill over a weir and continue down stream to the next lake series of lakes. The water continues its trip downstream until eventually it outfalls the Pelican Landing Community and ends up in Estero Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. Unlike lake Okeechobee, our outfalls are NOT operable. They are concrete fixed in place structures and do not include removable or adjustable weirs. Additionally, I have spoken with the CDD engineer regarding the potential of setting up pumps to provide short term relief as was the case some 13-14 years ago. He advised that there is no emergency provision for this within the SFWMD policies. It is illegal and would subject us to significant daily fines, penalties and potential imprisonment.

… hopeful we will receive a few days of relief to allow the waters to recede and provide some additional capacity in the system for what appears to be another round of rain next week. The last time we had 5” or greater rainfall in Pelican Landing was in October of 1995 and it was 6”. This does not happen with great frequency, so the odds are with us that we are one and done for 2013.

the CDDs numbers are published on the websites  ( http://www.pelicanlandingcdds.net ), in the newsletter and in the resident directories. Whether calling the CDD offices or my offices, the caller is able to leave a message and if it is an emergency, our voice mails include cell phone numbers which may be utilized. Our phone systems do not forward these calls to the gates, in fact the gates will contact us if they receive after hour emergency calls that are of our jurisdiction.

(The above information was provided by Chuck Adams, Director of Operations, Wrathell, Hunt and Associates, LLC (management company for the Bayside and Bay Creek CDD’s) and is an adaptation of an email sent to the Longlake UOC Representative in response to questions posed regarding the high lake levels and resulting inability for water to drain from streets through storm drains … particularly problematic to the Longlake and Waterside Neighborhoods.)

2 thoughts on “HIGH Lake Levels and flooded roads

  1. So the original design was too conservative in choosing its maximum paramaters. Exactly what would be illegal behavior ? Breaching the weir temporarily would be a solution to protect the property of many as they have burned down homes in a city to protect the remainder of a city. How difficult is it to change a SFWMD policy when the reality of that policy could result in damage to many properties?

    and how hard is it to amend the SFWMD policy in view of the realities.

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