WASHINGTON COUNTY, TN (WJHL) – “We are committed to making this right. How long that’s going to take, exactly how we’re going to do it, we still don’t have those answers yet,” TVA Spokesman Jim Hopson said.
A week and a half after Tennessee Valley Authority announced Boone Lake levels will remain below normal for at least a year, TVA has still not pinpointed what the problem is underneath Boone Dam.
Tuesday, TVA held an open house to answer questions after announcing Boone Lake won’t be the Boone Lake everyone knows and loves this summer. The reason, water seeping under the earthen embankment of Boone Dam. But because even top engineers don’t yet know the exact cause of the problem, TVA continues to say there can be no for sure fix. Starting this spring, TVA will stabilize the foundation by injecting grout into the ground.
So far, TVA has maintained its experts do not have a full grasp of the problem at Boone Dam and do not know when the lake will be back to normal.
Here’s the response News Channel 11’s Lauren Haviland got when she asked for specifics. She asked, “so you can’t even say for sure that Boone Dam will ever be what we’re used to seeing?” TVA Spokesman Jim Hopson said, “what we are going to say tonight is that we are committed to finding out what the problem is and to executing the proper fix so that Boone Dam can maintain its conditions safely for the next 50 or 60 years.”
So, still no definite from TVA about the Boone Lake dilemma.
TVA said they hope to pinpoint the full extent of the problem in the next few months, then establish a clear timeline for repairs to the dam and full restoration of the lake.
At tables all around the high school cafeteria TVA offered the answers it could give about a variety of topics. Despite the obvious challenges, News Channel 11 found Boone Lake home and business owners with plans to make the best of the situation while the lake is low.
Boone Lake homeowner Donna Montgomery said, “in the meantime, I am going to have a project and building my new dock that I’ve always wanted and I can take my time.”
Rockingham Marina Owner Doug Sams said, “we will get a few of the marinas operating and we’re going to have a good time on the lake this summer. There’s a lot, lot of lake still there.”
Sams said because of his location, he will be able to offer access to the lake. He’ll actually add on this summer to meet the demand.
The TVA said Tuesday was the first of what News Channel 11 is told are more informational meetings to come. No dates have been released, yet.
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