SFWMD Closing North Shore Navigation Locks as Lake Okeechobee Levels Continue to Drop
Four locks closing, fifth lock will only be operated on weekends
|This map shows navigation locks that could be closed and/or have operating hours reduced because of low water levels in Lake Okeechobee. Click on image to see a larger version.
West Palm Beach, FL - For boaters navigating to and from Lake Okeechobee, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) will close several navigation locks on the north shore and reduce the operating hours of a fifth lock for safety reasons starting Friday, March 29. The closures are a result of lower water levels in Lake Okeechobee. Injury and lock damage could occur when boats pass through these structures at water levels below any of the designated safety limits.
Today, the water level in Lake Okeechobee is 11.97 feet NGVD. The following north shore locks are required to close for safety reasons when the lake falls below 12 feet NGVD:
- Martin County: S-135 structure, J&S Fish Camp
- Okeechobee County: G-36 structure, Henry Creek
- Glades County: S-127 structure, Buckhead Ridge
- Glades County: S-131 structure, Lakeport
Also on the north shore, the operating hours for the S-193 lock at Taylor Creek in Okeechobee County will be reduced to Saturdays and Sundays between 5:30 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. The S-193 lock will close if lake levels fall below 11 feet NGVD.
Changing conditions on site may warrant SFWMD closing this lock before the lake drops to prescribed levels.
On the south shore, the S-310 lock at Clewiston in Hendry County will remain open even as low lake levels continue. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages the locks leading from the lake to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee rivers.