Flows set to increase from McKay Dam

Media Contact: Michael Coffey, (208) 378-5020, mcoffey@usbr.gov

For Release: March 06, 2019

PENDLETON, Ore. – The Bureau of Reclamation will be increasing flows out of McKay Dam from 10 cubic feet per second (cfs) to 50 cfs into McKay Creek, beginning Thursday, March 7, 2019. McKay Creek flows through the neighborhoods of southwest Pendleton.

On Friday, March 8, flows will increase by 25 cfs to 75 cfs. Additional flow increases are possible later next week, depending on weather conditions; however, flows are expected to remain within the safe channel capacity.

Snowpack in McKay Creek basin as of March 1 sits well above normal at 163 percent of the 1981–2010 average. Currently, McKay Reservoir is at approximately 58 percent of capacity. A full supply of irrigation water out of McKay Reservoir is anticipated this summer.

Reclamation officials are advising the public to be aware of the potential danger associated with increased McKay Creek flows. The water is cold and can be deep and fast in various locations. Extreme caution should be used near the river banks. With the recent wintry conditions, ice along the channel banks may be loosened because of increased flows.

For real-time McKay Creek flows at Reclamation facilities in the Pacific Northwest Region, visit https://www.usbr.gov/pn/hydromet/rtgraph.html?list=mcko%20q&daily=mcko%20qd.

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Reclamation is the largest wholesale water supplier in the United States, and the nation's second largest producer of hydroelectric power. Its facilities also provide substantial flood control, recreation, and fish and wildlife benefits. Visit our website at https://www.usbr.gov and follow us on Twitter @USBR.

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