Lake Oconee Dam (Clarks Hill - Strom Thurmond Lake)

Field Descriptions

Dam Name: Lake Oconee Dam
NID ID: GA00444
Longitude: -83.58
Latitude: 33.87111
County: OCONEE
State: GA
Nearest City: SNOWS MILL
Distance: 4 miles
Owner Type: Private
Private Dam? No
Dam Type: Earth
Purposes: Recreation
Year Completed: 1957
Dam Length: 450 feet
Dam Height: 37 feet
Maximum Storage: 731 acre-feet
Normal Storage: 558 acre-feet
Surface Area: 39 acres
Hazard Potential: Low
Emergency Action Plan? Not Required By Submitting Agency
Inspection Date: 1979-12-19
Inspection Frequency: 0
State Regulated Dam? No
State Regulating Agency: GA-SAFE DAMS PROGRAM
Spillway Width: 0 feet
Source Agency:

Dam Safety For Boats

A large amount of water can be released from a dam without any warning at any time and by any means. For example, when the demand for electricity is high, the turbines at a dam may be turned on automatically, resulting in a significant increase in the downstream flow of water in only a matter of seconds.

If there's a need to release water through the sluiceways (outlets at the base of the dam), this operation can also create a great swell of discharged water downstream.

During flood operations, any or all spillway gates across the width of a dam can be opened to release upstream flood water that needs to pass to the next downstream reservoir. Upstream or downstream, even the most experienced boater with the strongest motor is no match for this strong flow of water plunging over a spillway of a dam. Even if you're boating far downstream of a spilling dam, recirculating current can pull a powerful boat upstream toward plunging water that could shred any boat.

Some dams equipped with navigation locks create turbulent water as well. When vessels pass through, strong flow is released near the exhaust ports of the wing wall of the lock.

Warning Systems At Dams

To warn reservoir users of potential danger, warning devices are installed at many dams:

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