Thursday, January 12, 2006

Gilboa Dam

 We were all a little mystified to see the following item on the agenda for the January 2006, Village of Scotia Board of Trustee’s meeting.

#9 "Announce Public Information Meeting regarding Flood Threat from the Gilboa Dam"

My first reaction was “Huh???”  Well it turns out, the experts say, on the rare case of the Gilboa Dam breaking, most of the Village of Scotia would be under water.   As a precaution, the Village is creating an emergency plan. 

The Gilboa Dam holds back up to 20 billion gallons of the Schoharie Creek Reservoir. The reservoir provides drinking water for New York City. It’s 5.8 miles long and is 150 feet deep in spots. The dam itself is 182 feet high and 2000 feet long.
Gilboa Dam
Even though the Gilboa Reservoir is south-west of the Village of Scotia, the flow is north via the Schoharie Creek into the Mohawk River just above Amsterdam.  By my own calculations, the Schoharie Creek has about 40 miles to go before it flows into the Mohawk. According to, flooding would take about 12 hours to reach Fort Hunter on the Mohawk.  I’m guessing the next 20 miles to Scotia would add another 5 hours to our preparation time.

There will be a public meeting to reassure the residents that steps are being taken to provide a plan just in case. A meeting will be held at the Scotia-Glenville Senior Center on Weds, Jan 25th at 7:00 PM.


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