Broken Dam in Blue Springs Causes Concern for Farmers

By: Risa Avila
By: Risa Avila

Loren Trauernicht has concerns about the way he will irrigate his Blue Springs farm.

“We’ve got a pivot that we pump out of the river about a mile north of the bridge here.” Says Trauernicht.

The dam that pooled the water he uses for irrigation gave way last weekend, making it much more difficult for him to get his equipment near the flow of water.

“It’s probably going to drop our water table like say three to four feet,” says Trauernicht.

Jerry Bucy of the Natural Resources Conservation Service show exactly how much water they will be losing.

“Well originally the hydro plant had this dam right in the channel of Blue River and basically backed water on this dashed line,” demonstrates Bucy as he refers to a diagram.

Since the dam broke, water passes through without pooling, and that is causing problems.

“We’re losing all this volume of reservoir behind there,” says Bucy.

Although water will still pass through, Trauernicht is still worried.

“There’s going to be some places you can’t get the water to actually pump.” Says Trauernicht.

That means farmers like Loren will have to adapt their irrigation pumps to accommodate the ten foot drop in water levels. County officials are meeting this Thursday to discuss plans for rebuilding.

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