FAUQUAY-VARINA: Dam in Fuquay-Varina in danger of failure - WFLA News Channel 8

Dam in Fuquay-Varina in danger of failure

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FUQUAY-VARINA, N.C. -

Officials in North Carolina are using a siphon to lower water levels in a private lake in Fuquay-Varina where a damn is at risk of failure.

The North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources said an 8-inch siphon was installed to lower water levels behind the privately-owned Sherman Lakes Lower Dam.

DENR said the siphoned water is being directed to a nearby creek.

A routine inspection spotted erosion on the dam, which is located about 100 yards from U.S. Highway 401, officials said.

"Things were progressing uncomfortably to the point where we decided we needed to lower the reservoir as soon as possible," Steve McEvoy, director of the state's Dam Safety Program. "So we returned to the site today to lower the reservoir to reduce the threat of a dam failure."

DENR said an engineer for the dam's owners reported to state dam safety officials they intend to send plans to repair the dam within a week.

As of late Wednesday afternoon, levels in the lake had been lowered enough that there is no longer water flowing through the emergency spillway, according to DENR. But the state plans to keep operating the siphon to lower the lake levels until repairs can begin.

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