NYPA Press Release

NYPA Announces Extended Release of Water Through Long Sault Dam This Winter

For Immediate Release: 11/21/19

Contact:  Karen White | Karen.white@nypa.gov | (315) 764-6863

Public Advised to Use Caution Along the South Channel and Along the
St. Lawrence River Through the Winter Months

MASSENA – The New York Power Authority is reminding the public to use caution during the winter months when the gates of the Long Sault Dam are open to release excess water in the St. Lawrence River.

The gates at Long Sault Dam are currently expected to be open throughout the winter months. The opening of the Long Sault gates and release of excess water in the St. Lawrence River can result in rapidly changing river flows both upstream and downstream of the dams.

During the winter months, members of the public are advised to look and listen for warning signs to potential hazardous conditions on the river. Signage will be posted along various locations near the river and horns will let the public know water is being released from the Long Sault Dam.

The release of water can potentially cause unsafe ice conditions downstream of the dam and along the South Channel of the river throughout the winter. Members of the public, including those ice fishing on the river or channel, should be alert to rapidly changing ice conditions and should stay off the ice. See flier for a map detailing affected areas.

Members of the public should:

  • Use caution on the river
  • Keep back a minimum of 800 ft. from the Long Sault Dam spillway and Robert Moses Power Dam, both on the upstream and downstream side.
  • Be aware of changing river conditions and strong currents.

The release of water Long Sault Dam will assist in maintaining the International Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River Board’s (ILOSLRB) planned river flow to accommodate maintenance at the Moses-Saunders Power Dam. The spilling will not increase the overall planned river flow.

Outflows from Lake Ontario are established on a weekly basis by the International Lake Ontario and St. Lawrence River Board (ILOSLRB). The Board, in conjunction with its staff, continues to monitor and reassess conditions on an ongoing basis. Information on hydrologic conditions, water levels and outflows are available on the Board’s website and posted to the Board’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/InternationalLakeOntarioStLawrenceRiverBoard (English). For more information on water flows visit: http://ijc.org/en_/islrbc

Actual outflows will depend on conditions in the St. Lawrence River. Spilling activities could take place through the remainder of winter and spring.

For more information on how NYPA manages needs for water and power production, please visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=23&v=13K_6oOcZXo

For more information on marine conditions, visit the Great Lakes St. Lawrence Seaway System website: http://www.greatlakes-seaway.com/en/