Four locks on north shore of lake could be closed and hours restricted at fifth lock for safety if warranted by conditions
For boaters navigating to and from Lake Okeechobee, the South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) may soon close four navigation locks on the north shore and reduce the operating hours of a fifth lock for safety reasons. Injury and lock damage could occur when boats pass through these structures when lake levels water are outside of designated safety limits.
As of March 19, 2020, Lake Okeechobee is 12.29 feet NGVD. The following north shore locks are required to close temporarily for safety reasons when the lake falls below 12 feet NGVD:
- Martin County: S-135 boat lock, J&S Fish Camp
- Okeechobee County: G-36 boat lock, Henry Creek
- Glades County: S-127 boat lock, Buckhead Ridge
- Glades County: S-131 boat lock, Lakeport
Also on the north shore, the operating hours for the S-193 boat lock at Taylor Creek in Okeechobee County could be reduced to Saturdays and Sundays between 5:30 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. if lake levels fall below 12 feet. The S-193 lock will close entirely if lake levels fall below 11 feet NGVD.
Locks would remain closed until lake levels reached at least 12.5 feet NGVD.
On the south shore, the S-310 lock at Clewiston in Hendry County will remain open. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages the locks leading from the lake to the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee rivers.
To get the latest information on Lake Okeechobee’s water volume, including daily levels, visit SFWMD’s website HERE.
To get the latest information on navigation through SFWMD structures and waterways, click HERE.