Siren Testing Begins in Lake Placid

G-90 water control structure and residents viewing flood information

Left to right: (1) A Lake Placid resident reviews a map of potential flooded areas associated with a catastrophic failure at the G-90 structure. (2) The G-90 water control structure is located on Jack Creek in Lake Placid. (3) David Crane, District structures operations manager (right), answers questions from residents about the flood inundation area. (4) Steve Clardy, District analyst (right), uses GIS technology to locate a Lake Placid resident’s property.

Residents living near the District’s G-90 water control structure on Jack Creek in Lake Placid will now hear monthly audible testing of the emergency siren associated with the structure.

The testing began on July 2 and will occur the first Saturday of each month at 12:30 p.m. to ensure the siren performs properly. During testing, the siren will sound once for approximately 15 seconds and is expected to reach a two-mile radius.

“The siren was installed as an additional safety measure,” said Mike Holtkamp, District operations director. “The District and Highlands County needed to take every reasonable precaution for the safety and welfare of those individuals living downstream of the structure in the unlikely event of a failure.”

In the event of a real emergency, the siren would be activated with alternating intervals of three minutes of sound followed by three minutes of silence to alert residents living along Jack and Josephine creeks to evacuate and seek higher ground. This would continue until the conclusion of the emergency situation or until all residents downstream of the structure have been safely evacuated.

The structure regulates water levels in Lake June-in-Winter to maintain the environmental health and recreational and aesthetic value of the lake. The District currently owns and operates the structure, which is regularly inspected and maintained to make sure it is safe and functioning properly.

In preparation of the first test, the District mailed letters to more than 4,000 residents and scheduled a public meeting to answer questions about the siren. The public meeting was held at the H.L. Bishop Clubhouse in Lake Placid on June 30. District Operations and Communications staff as well as Highlands County emergency management personnel were available to provide information to residents. Large-scale maps were on display where attendees could locate their property in relation to the dam flood inundation area.

Another public meeting will be scheduled this winter for those residents who were unable to attend the June 30 meeting. For more information about the G-90 structure, please call David Crane, District structure operations manager, at 1-800-423-1476 (FL only) or (352) 796-7211, ext. 4535.