Panola not in danger from breached dam; officials continue to monitor Arkabutla Lake

Published 9:22 am Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Panola County’s Emergency Operations Management team sent a county-wide alert on the mobile app used for weather and other important information Tuesday afternoon, telling residents the county is not in imminent danger of flash flooding, following dire sounding announcements of a possible dam breach at Arkabutla Lake.

The National Weather Service and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began warning residents of Coahoma, Tate, DeSoto, Tate, Tallahatchie, Quitman, and Panola Tuesday morning of flash flooding potential from 2 p.m. until Wednesday at 2 p.m.

“Flash Flooding caused by a potential dam or levee failure continues to be possible at the Arkabutla Dam on the Coldwater River.. Dam failure may result in flash flooding of low-lying areas below the dam,” the announcement read.

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The Panola County message, sent about 4:15 p.m. on Tuesday, said:

“We are aware and monitoring the situation with Arkabutla Dam. We have been and will remain in communication with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to stay updated. The Corps observed some concerning conditions at the outlet structure of the dam. As a result, they are closely monitoring and taking necessary actions to ensure the safety of the surrounding communities. The Corps will be lowering the lake’s level for further investigation of the issue. Again, there is no imminent danger to Panola County.”