SUN SENTINEL: Lake Okeechobee level hits peak range, raises flooding threat

Sun Sentinel: September 20, 2016. Written by Andy Reid.

Lake Okeechobee's rising waters are pushing past the peak range intended to guard against flooding South Florida, and are expected to keep going up before the end of hurricane season.

The Army Corps of Engineers tries to keep the lake between 12.5 feet and 15.5 feet year round to ease the strain on the leaky, 143-mile-long dike, which is undergoing a slow-moving repair expected to take until 2025.

The lake level on Tuesday hit 15.5 feet above sea level. It's projected to top 16 feet by the end of November, when South Florida's storm season typically ends.

The rising lake is prompting increased inspections of its troubled dike — a 30-foot-tall mound of sand, shell and rock considered one of the country's most at risk of failing.

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