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With Lake Ontario 10 inches above 2019, Niagara plans flood response

With Lake Ontario 10 inches above 2019, Niagara plans flood response

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Schumer in Olcott

Sandbags were used to keep the water from flowing into the yard of the Olcott Yacht Club in June 2019. (Mark Mulville/News file photo)

Lake Ontario's water level is about 10 inches above last year's mark at this time, according to the Army Corps of Engineers, and Niagara County officials who led flood responses in 2017 and 2019 are making plans to again battle rising water.

Jonathan F. Schultz, county emergency management director, said Wednesday that he's planning for what might happen if the lake reaches 250 feet above sea level. That would be about 10 inches above last year's peak of 249.2 feet in Olcott.

"Potentially, at 250, many of the low-lying areas would have to be evacuated," Schultz said.

He said that would apply to parts of Olcott and the villages of Wilson and Youngstown.

Last year, New York State declared a state of emergency when the lake level reached 248.8 feet. Schultz said his crews started placing sandbags in vulnerable areas when the reading reached 248 feet.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration station in Olcott measured the water level at 246.54 feet at noon Wednesday.

The Buffalo News: Good Morning, Buffalo

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