Waurika Lake at Record Low - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Waurika Lake at Record Low

WAURIKA Okla_ An important water source in Southwest Oklahoma is at an all-time low.

Waurika Lake is at about 48% capacity. The water level is down 12 feet from its normal elevation. The low levels are beginning to affect the six communities who rely on the lake as an important water source.

It's both a water source and a recreation spot for many, and the quickly decreasing water levels at Waurika Lake could mean big changes for local communities.

"We cannot afford to let that lake run out of water," Waurika City Manager Chuck Brown said. "So, we are going to take care of it, and we monitor it almost daily. Believe me, it is in our thoughts and minds constantly."

Lawton, Duncan, Walters, Waurika, Comanche and Temple all look to Waurika Lake as a water source, one whose water supply could run dry in about a year.

"This is the lowest that the lake has been since we started impounding water in 1978," Brown said. "We have never faced this situation before."

Brown said the lack of rain near Waurika Lake is beginning to affect his town that uses this lake as a revenue and water source.

"We get a lot of revenue from our water. About a third of our budget comes from our water," Brown said.

Waurika Lake is also a source of revenue for the town. Low lake levels mean fewer people stopping to eat and fill up their gas tanks. Brown said the water levels are already beginning to affect boat usage only days into the summer months. Waurika is already looking to a back-up plan.

"We have some wells around here that we used to use, and we have not looked at those in a long time," Brown said. "We are going to have to start planning to look at those."

Brown said that he continues to hope for rain, but as levels continue to drop, rations and increases in water prices are possible.

"If the lake goes down another 2 or 3 feet, we will look at going into stage one," Brown said.

That decision to ration will help the local communities with something they cannot do without.

"Water is not something that you can live without," Brown said. "Food you can go a little while, but water you can't. So, we will help out however we can."

Brown said Waurika does not own Waurika Lake. So, all cities who use Waurika Lake as a water source will have equal access until it runs dry.

Waurika is also seeing the effects of the low lake levels in their drinking water. Additional chlorine has been added to help disinfect it, which Brown said is a normal problem with a concentrated water source.

  • Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity hosts Project Alpha

    Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity hosts Project Alpha

    Saturday, February 17 2018 4:47 PM EST2018-02-17 21:47:01 GMT
    (Source KSWO)(Source KSWO)

    Young men in the community learned about male responsibilities when it comes to sex and teen pregnancy Saturday at Project Alpha.

    Young men in the community learned about male responsibilities when it comes to sex and teen pregnancy Saturday at Project Alpha.

  • Florida, angry and grieving, takes gun protest to streets

    Florida, angry and grieving, takes gun protest to streets

    Friday, February 16 2018 11:00 PM EST2018-02-17 04:00:25 GMT
    Saturday, February 17 2018 4:45 PM EST2018-02-17 21:45:50 GMT

    Anger bubbles over at funerals for students and teachers killed in Florida school shooting.

    Anger bubbles over at funerals for students and teachers killed in Florida school shooting.

  • Trump focuses on first responders after Florida shooting

    Trump focuses on first responders after Florida shooting

    Saturday, February 17 2018 1:30 AM EST2018-02-17 06:30:42 GMT
    Saturday, February 17 2018 4:44 PM EST2018-02-17 21:44:56 GMT
    President Donald Trump visited a Florida community reeling from a deadly school shooting, meeting privately with victims and cheering the heroics of first responders, but extending few public words of consolation...
    President Donald Trump visited a Florida community reeling from a deadly school shooting, meeting privately with victims and cheering the heroics of first responders, but extending few public words of consolation to those in deep mourning.
Powered by Frankly