Lake Okeechobee approaching 17 feet, highest point since 2005

The rain was not welcome Thursday along Lake Okeechobee.

More water means lake levels will continue to rise.

The lake is approaching 17 feet and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has stopped or reduced discharges to the east because of flooding concerns.

The Corps is inspecting the dike two times a week and will start daily inspections if levels reach 17 feet.

As the rain pours in Belle Glade, Matilda Edwards grows worrisome.

"I'm concerned because we're vulnerable," said Edwards.

The situation reminds former Pahokee Mayor JP Sasser of 2005.

"Dike was almost breached," said Sasser.

He is now concerned with the Corps stopping discharges. "Concerns me a great deal."

If the lake reaches 17.5 feet there could be increased seepage which can lead to problems with the dike.

However the Corps is confident with its integrity for now as they continue their inspections.

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