Sept. 8, 2004, COLUMBIA, S.C. – Marinas and homeowners need to begin moving their docks back to their original locations now that Lake Murray's water levels have risen to near elevation 351, South Carolina Electric & Gas officials said today.
Docks were moved out during a mandatory drawdown for safety reasons to allow for the construction of a backup dam at Lake Murray.
Jim Landreth, vice president of fossil/hydro operations for SCE&G (NYSE:SCG), said it is crucial for the docks to be returned to their original locations in accordance with a two-step Refilling Plan approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
SCE&G developed the Refilling Plan to address the continued safety of Saluda Dam and the people living and working downstream, the concerns of Lake Murray users, and the residents and businesses on the lake. Elevation 351 is the trigger point for people to begin the process of moving the docks back to their original location in a safe and controlled manner.
SCE&G's FERC-approved plan calls for refilling Lake Murray in two separate stages. The first stage allowed the lake to begin rising to elevation 351 after foundation work on the backup dam was completed, which occurred in May. Now that water levels are at 351, SCE&G will hold the lake around elevation 351 for several weeks to allow time for homeowners and marina owners to move docks back to their original locations. In addition, it will allow the S.C. Department of Natural Resources the time it needs to move navigational buoys back to their original locations.
During this time, SCE&G will continue monitoring instrumentation on the dam to ensure safety.
The second step will allow the lake to begin rising to normal operating levels, which next spring should reach an elevation of around 358 feet. Starting now and as the lake continues to rise, dock owners are reminded that the temporary dock extensions will have to be removed.
"We have been mindful since beginning this project of what impact the drawdown would have on our neighbors and area businesses," Landreth said. "But safety was always our first concern, and it still is as docks and buoys are moved back to their original locations and we get the lake back to normal operating conditions."
SCE&G is the largest subsidiary of SCANA Corporation, an energy-based holding company principally engaged, through subsidiaries, in electric and natural gas utility operations, telecommunications and other energy-related businesses. Information about SCANA and its businesses is available on the company's Web site at www.scana.com.