Kariba floodgates to be opened

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The Zambezi River Authority (ZRA) says it will next week open one spillway gate at Kariba Dam to keep the water levels under check.

In a statement yesterday, ZRA said gate Number 3 would be opened on January 3.

The authority said during the 2010/11 rain season, the Zambezi River catchment area received above normal rainfall, which has resulted in high water levels at Kariba Dam.

“As the season enters the wetter period, January to March 2012, the rains are expected to gain momentum hence the lake level is expected to rise further,” reads part of the statement.

According to the notice, the acceptable lake level is 484,20 metres.

The authority said the gate would remain open until the situation stabilised.

“The general public and the communities along the Zambezi River downstream of Kariba Dam are advised to take this notice seriously to avoid loss of life and property due to flooding arising the spilling,” it said.

The opening of the gates usually attracts thousands of people, including tourists.