SALEM: The water level in the Mettur dam has increased following the sudden summer rain in the catchment areas. The water level now stands at 105.53 ft, which is enough to supply drinking water for Salem district till June first week.
Following copious rains last year, on most days from June-January, excess water from the Mettur dam was discharged for delta irrigation. After the discharge was stopped, around 1,000 to 1,500 cusecs of water was taken from the dam for various drinking water schemes. The water level then decreased from 108 ft (the water level on January 28) to 105 ft in March last week. Though the water level was expected to go below 100 ft this summer, the rain in April helped maintain the level at 105.53 ft.
On April 20, the inflow to the dam touched 3,610 cusecs and reduced again in the past 10 days. On Friday, the water level stood at 105.53 ft against its full capacity of 120 ft. The storage level stood at 72.19 TMC against its full capacity 93.47 TMC. The inflow to the dam reduced to 1,724 cusecs against Thursday's inflow of 2,047 cusecs. The water discharged from the dam for drinking water schemes continued at 1,500 cusecs.
Speaking to TNIE, Salem City Municipal Corporation (SCMC) officials said they need 113 MLD for the city. We can take water from the dam till it touches 40 ft. If the water discharge is at 1,000 cusecs a day, there will be no crisis. As the level stands at 105 ft, we can take water till June first week and still it would only reduce the level by three ft, officials added.