Power Company Now Blaming SeMo Reservoir Spill on Hurricane

JANUARY 19, 2006 - Posted at 4:02 p.m. CST

ST. LOUIS, MO - AmerenUE says an overflow of water at its Taum Sauk reservoir in Sepetember can be blamed in part on Hurricane Katrina.

And the St. Louis-based utility says the incident was "distinctly different" from events leading to the reservoir's failure last month.

In a report submitted today to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, Ameren says the Sepetember 25 spill was the result of "wave action" due to high winds from Hurricane Katrina, as well as slightly elevated reservoir levels.

And contrary to news reports, Ameren says the integrity of the reservoir was not weakened in September.

On Sunday, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that a superintendent at Taum Sauk sent an e-mail to several Ameren supervisors after the September incident, warning about a possible collapse.

(Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)