Ameren Missouri advises dock owners at Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks that the annual winter drawdown of the lake level will soon begin. Property owners are urged to take appropriate measures to protect their docks from the lower water levels and other winter conditions that routinely occur at this time of year.
Lowering the lake level by several feet during the winter months is necessary to provide increased water storage capacity for flood control during the spring rainy season.
Phil Thompson, superintendent of Ameren Missouri’s Osage Renewable Energy Center at Bagnell Dam, says the annual drawdown is expected to begin around Jan. 1, 2012, and reach a target seasonal low of about 654 feet (above sea level) by mid-February. However, Thompson says lake elevations down to 651 feet—nine feet below full reservoir—are possible during the winter season.
Ameren Missouri provides a recording of lake level information—updated daily on weekdays—at 573.365.9205. In addition, hourly information is available on the Internet by going to AmerenMissouri.com/lake and clicking on “Lake Levels & Operations.”
To minimize the effects of lower lake levels and other winter conditions, Ameren Missouri offers the following tips for dock owners:
• Disconnect hinges linking docks and seawalls or piers to allow the entire structure to follow the water level down.
• Lengthen cables to permit docks to drop as the lake level drops.
• During any absences from the property, ask nearby neighbors to watch the dock or retain a local boat dealer or dock builder to care for the property during the winter season.
• Use “bubblers” or other anti-icing devices to help protect docks from ice damage.
Ameren Missouri also reminds the public that water releases from Bagnell Dam into the Osage River can occur at any time. These releases can result in swift currents and rapidly rising water levels in the river. Prior to releases starting, a warning siren is sounded.
Ameren Missouri has been providing electric and gas service for more than a century, and our electric rates are among the lowest in the nation. We serve 1.2 million electric and 126,000 natural gas customers in central and eastern Missouri. Our mission is to meet their energy needs in a safe, reliable, efficient and environmentally responsible manner. Our service area covers 63 counties and 500 towns, including the greater St. Louis area. For more information, visit AmerenMissouri.com.