Lake Flower water lowered for work

SARANAC LAKE – The village lowered Lake Flower significantly Tuesday, but it’ll have to lower it more today to do much emergency construction work on Duprey Street sewer lines.

The village is letting out water from its dam below Main Street, lowering the level of Lake Flower, Oseetah Lake and the Saranac River as far up as the state-run Lower Locks.

“Boaters are advised to use extreme caution” in that area, the village announced today.

The reason for the dam release is to stop lake water from flowing into the sewer lines a contractor is trying to replace. It was a hard slog Tuesday, even with the lake level less than an inch over the dam’s spillway, according to village Manager John Sweeney.

“At this time we still don’t know to what level we need to lower the lake to facilitate the construction,” Sweeney said. “It was almost impossible to do the work over there yesterday. The rain didn’t help, either.”

As of this morning, the lake level was down to 6.5 inches below the spillway, and the village continues to release water. Officials said they plan to get it down another 6 inches or so by Thursday morning.

“The Village has initiated Reverse 911 notification with Franklin and Essex County Emergency Services for property owners within the designated are(a),” the village said in a press release. “If you did not receive notification please take this time to register at: Franklin County Hyper Reach at:, Essex County Alert at:”

In May, the village Board of Trustees issued an emergency declaration to replace the sewer line. The move came after a video inspection, prompted by a problem with a Duprey Street resident’s lateral sewer line, found the main could collapse at any time. J.E. Sheehan Contracting Corp. submitted the lowest bid, $230,900, to replace nearly 500 feet of sewer line on Duprey Street, and last week the village board voted unanimously to award the project to the Potsdam-based company.