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TVA River Neighbors
august 2006

 

New warning systems at Wheeler, Apalachia, and Nickajack Dams

TVA recently installed automatic warning systems at several hydroelectric projects. New systems are in place and operational at Wheeler, Apalachia, and Nickajack.

image of warning signThese warning systems are necessary since reservoir operations for flood control, power generation, and other purposes can create hazardous conditions both upstream and downstream of dams.

“Visible and audible warning devices will be activated automatically prior to water-level changes in an effort to ensure public safety,” says TVA Senior Vice President of River Operations Janet Herrin. “When these sirens sound and strobe lights flash, boaters and other recreational users should move quickly to safe areas.”

TVA has installed sirens above the discharge area and downstream of the Apalachia powerhouse. New strobe lights and signs also warn the public of impending changes in water conditions at this location. Signs downstream of Apalachia Dam provide additional identification of hazardous areas.

Sirens, strobe lights, and warning signs have been installed at Wheeler and Nickajack dams. In addition, danger buoys upstream of both dams identify hazardous areas ahead. Since the spillway at Nickajack is remotely operated from a distant location, there is an even greater need for the public to pay extremely close attention to these warning devices.

Updated safety warning systems are already in place at Great Falls, Tims Ford, Kentucky, Norris, Chickamauga, Fort Loudoun, and Watts Bar. Plans call for new systems to be installed at Ocoee No. 3, South Holston, and Wilson before the end of 2006.

Find more information about hazardous areas near dams.

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