Boaters impacted by fluctuating river levels

NOW: Boaters impacted by fluctuating river levels

ELKHART, Ind -- This is typically the time of the year that we see boats in the St. Joseph river, but due to the fluctuating water levels, that activity has not been as popular.

Just two weeks ago the call came in to the St. Joseph River Association from a resident, about his dock being under water.

That concerning call caused the President of the association to have the dam engineer to come out to the river to check the level.

"I knew that if this water level continued that we’d have some serious damage with boats floating away, etc. So, I called my dam engineer with I&M, he came over to Elkhart and opened up several gates. He had determined that a sensor failed, that told I&M what the levels were supposed to be." said the president of the St. Joseph River Association, Tom Shoff.

The water levels for the St. Joseph River are read from a system that is located in Ft. Wayne, that receives the reading from a device called a transducer.

That device eventually failed, causing the incorrect readings in Ft. Wayne and now causing residents along the river to become hesitant to take their boats into the water.

"I noticed it’s only thirty or forty percent of the boats that are normally out this time of the year. I brought my boat down from the landing and I noticed how shallow it is." said resident Chuck Gleissner.

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