LA District preps for Hurricane Hilary, keeps public safe, captures water from storm
Water at Sepulveda Dam begins to recede Aug. 21 – the day after Tropical Storm Hilary made landfall in Southern California. During the storm’s landfall, the dam reached an elevation of 680 feet, prompting the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Los Angeles District’s Reservoir Operations Center to notify local law enforcement agencies to close Burbank Boulevard, seen in the distance. Rainstorms create reservoir impoundment behind Sepulveda Dam. The project has eight outlets, four of them gated. Because the other four passages have no gates, Sepulveda Dam is not intended to “shut off” the flow to the LA River. The “standby” position of the gated passages is wide open. Water passes through Sepulveda Dam without much reduction until the inflow is great enough for the reservoir elevation to rise. Then, as the LA River channel downstream approaches its capacity, the Corps of Engineers reduces the discharge to provide relief to the LA River downstream.