Corps releasing water from lake to raise falling river

MISSISSIPPI RIVER — Amid strong concerns about the declining level of the already low Mississippi River, the Army Corps of Engineers is releasing water from an Illinois lake to add to the flow of the Mississippi.

Last Saturday, Corps of Engineers officials began releasing water at Carlyle Lake in southern Illinois, saying the additional water will provide the depth needed for barge traffic to safely pass Thebes, Ill. Rock formations there will begin to pose a threat to navigation if the river drops another couple of feet. The corps has hired contractors to blast away the formations with work expected to begin this week.

The corps says the additional water from Carlyle Lake is expected to fully reach Thebes by Christmas Eve, providing an additional six inches of depth to the river.

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