Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Officials unable to drain rising water out of Lake Tarpon

PALM HARBOR — The water in Lake Tarpon is as high as it's ever been, lapping at the tops of seawalls.

Nervous lakeside homeowners are calling the Southwest Florida Water Management District, all of them asking the same question: Why isn't the agency opening the gates to the Lake Tarpon Outfall Canal to drain the excess lake water into Old Tampa Bay?

The answer: It's not that simple.

"At this point, the gate's wide open," Swiftmud spokeswoman Robyn Felix said Monday. "The problem is, the tides and the wind are pushing water in while we're pushing water out."

She said the agency has received at least 40 phone calls about the situation.

The canal was built to control flooding in Lake Tarpon. But on Sunday morning, high tide in Tampa Bay was much higher than normal due to Tropical Storm Debby. Swiftmud had to close the canal gate because the tide was forcing water up the canal and into the lake.

"Residents are saying they've never seen the water that high. It could take several days to get the water out," Felix said, because rainwater is draining into the lake, and water levels in Tampa Bay are still high.

Officials unable to drain rising water out of Lake Tarpon 06/25/12 [Last modified: Monday, June 25, 2012 2:44pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Hyde Park Village awaits two new clothing stores


    TAMPA — Two new retailers, Social Status and Boho Hunter, are scheduled to open in Hyde Park Village this fall.

    Pictured is the exterior of Goody Goody, located in Tampa's Hyde Park Village.
[Times file photo]
  2. Ferguson attorney: Brown family settlement $1.5 million


    ST. LOUIS — The $1.5 million awarded this week to the parents of Michael Brown is the latest of several large settlements involving black suspects who were killed by police, but it's far from the largest.

    In this Sept. 27, 2014, file photo, the parents of Michael Brown, Lezley McSpadden, left, and Michael Brown Sr., sit for an interview with The Associated Press in Washington. The city attorney in Ferguson, Missouri, said Friday  that the city's insurance company paid $1.5 million to settle a lawsuit filed by the family of Michael Brown. [AP photo]
  3. What happened when I took my dad to a Pitbull concert

    Music & Concerts

    TAMPA — "So, you know how you like Pitbull?" I asked my dad. "We can see him."

    Selfie of Divya Kumar and Anand Kumar at Pitbull/Enrique Iglesias concert.
  4. Sears closing another 20 stores


    NEW YORK — Sears is closing another 20 stores as the ailing retailer tries to turn around its business.

    In a government filing Friday, real estate investment trust Seritage confirmed that Sears Holdings Corp. is closing another 20 stores, two of which are Kmart stores.
[AP file photo]
  5. A second mistrial: Jury deadlocks in Ohio cop's murder retrial


    CINCINNATI — A mistrial was declared Friday in the murder retrial of a white University of Cincinnati police officer after the jury said it was hopelessly deadlocked on charges in the fatal traffic stop shooting of an unarmed black motorist.

    Former University of Cincinnati police officer Raymond Tensing, left, and his attorney Stew Mathews listen as Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Leslie Ghiz tells the jury to continue deliberations after the jury said they are deadlocked during Tensing's trial on Friday in Cincinnati. [AP photo]