At a strategic session on Tuesday, June 12th, District of Lake Country Mayor and Council were applauded for a decision made two years ago that paid dividends this past weekend during high water flows in Vernon Creek.

Over 40 years ago the Vernon Creek spillway infrastructure was constructed. The lifespan and deterioration of a piece of municipal infrastructure is calculated at the time of initial construction in this case 1970 and then monitored as the years pass by and usage and environmental conditions change. During 2008-2009 some deterioration of the Vernon Creek spillway was noted and funds were set aside for future repairs. In 2010 it was recognized that deterioration was occurring at a rate faster than anticipated; and Engineering staff approached Council with a request for additional funding for a $150,000 repair to the spillway infrastructure.

Competent contractors were sourced, and state of the art concrete products were used to upgrade the spillway. This wise investment paid dividends this past week June 9-12th when water flows and turbidity rates were closely monitored at the Vernon Creek spillway.

With the water flowing at 7620 litres per second, a very large "rooster tail" was observed at the base of the spillway that is created by the energy dissipaters to protect the plunge pool at the bottom of the spillway.

"This is the second highest flow I've seen in the past 18 years that I've been here," said Michael Mercer, Director of Engineering.

Mercer expressed appreciation for the proactive team approach to the monitoring and upgrade of aging infrastructure, and the decision made by Council two years ago.
"Otherwise, we may have been reporting on a much different outcome at Tuesday's meeting. Structure failure on Vernon Creek could have had serious implications. But the spillway is operating safely and as intended."