WACO, Texas (FOX 44) – A typical assumption after rain falls is the drought issue becomes better. But, the City of Waco is getting closer and closer to moving to stage three of the drought contingency plan.
The lake level is just over 451 feet when it should be at 462, making the lake 11 feet lower than it should be.
“A lot of things coming to the surface on the water,” Lake Waco lead park ranger Jarod Briscoe said. “We’re seeing less and less lake surface to recreate on or to use.”
Even though it rained Sunday, Briscoe says it’ll take much more than that to raise the water levels.
“As dry as we’ve been over the last several months, it’s going to take significant water in order to bring back the lake levels,” Briscoe said.
In order for the levels to rise, water doesn’t need to fall on the lake, but the river basin for the Bosque river.
“The river basin for the Bosque River is in Stephenville and Hico and in places like that out west and north,” Briscoe said. “And so we really need to see rain across the entire basin.”
Briscoe says people on the lake need to watch for new obstructions that are now exposed.
“Anything that was ten foot below the surface a year ago is now on the surface,” Briscoe said. “And things that were 15 feet below the surface are now just right underneath the surface.”
He says make sure to go slow especially in shallow areas.
“If they’re not out in the main body of the lake, they really need to be careful,” Briscoe said. “There’s all kinds of obstructions that no one knows about, and nobody can be certain they’re not going to hit if they don’t keep a good eye out.”
The City of Waco has remained in Stage two since July, setting regulations for watering.
The City of Waco Water Conservation & Drought Contingency plan says stage three will automatically go into effect if the lake reaches 449 feet. Right now it’s at 451 feet. But, it says it will probably implement stage three in the next few weeks to be proactive.
For more details on drought contingency plan stage two, click here.