Army Corps of Engineers installs flood gauge on Cannonball River

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CANNON BALL, N.D. - Flooding remains a serious concern for the main Dakota Access Pipeline protest camp along the Cannonball River.

Installing monitoring equipment on the Cannonball River Bridge is now complete. It's the fifth in a series of gauges along the river, and the closest one to the protest camp.

"If you have a smart phone, computer access, you'll be able to know what's coming from upstream and be able to figure out what's going on," says Steve Robinson, Deputy Director USGS Dakota Water Science Center.

This stream gauge is now analyzing water levels on the Cannonball River for potential floods near Highway 1806. The device was funded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and installed by the the U.S Geological Survey. The data can be viewed on the internet.

"You can be halfway around the world and see what is going on with this gauge" says Robinson.

This is the first time a flood gauge is being installed here due to the camp being downstream.

"Lake Oahe is currently frozen over, so with the lake being frozen over and ice wanting to come downstream from the Cannonball, there's a real high probability that we will get ice dams or ice jams forming, and that will create higher water," says Alan Schlag, Service Hydrologist at National Weather Service Bismarck.

Robinson says a dramatic rise in the water levels would indicate the presence of an ice jam.

The gauge will stay on the bridge until mid-to-late-April and then be removed.