8-foot-wide vortex opens up in Texas lake

Officials said the Lake Texoma vortex was caused by water being drained from the Denison Dam due to high water levels.
By Ben Hooper Contact the Author   |  June 26, 2015 at 12:18 PM
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TULSA, Okla., June 26 (UPI) -- The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers shared video of an 8-foot-wide vortex in Texas' Lake Texoma that officials said could swallow a boat.

The Tulsa District U.S. Army Corps of Engineers shared a YouTube video of the vortex near the Texas-Oklahoma border from earlier this month, when it measured about 8 feet in diameter, and officials said the vortex was still ongoing this week, but it has reduced in size to about 2 1/2 to 3 feet.

BJ Parkey, assistant lake manager at Lake Texoma, said the vortex was caused by water being drained from the reservoir's Denison Dam due to unusually high water levels.

"Just like in your house when you fill a bathtub full of water and [open] the drain, it will develop a vortex or whirlpool," Parkey told Business Insider.

The YouTube post said the vortex is "capable of sucking in a full-sized boat, so please heed all safety buoys and caution signs."

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