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Big snowpack increases flood risk

SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) -- Heavy snowfall in February and March above Lake Pend Oreille (pahn-du-RAY) has increased the snowpack to 130 to 150 percent of average and raised the prospect of flooding.

The elevated snowpack has the potential to cause flooding around the lake and downstream of Albeni Falls Dam on the Pend Oreille River.

High flows are prompting the Army Corps of Engineers to release about 25,000 cubic-feet-per-second of water from Albeni Falls Dam for the foreseeable future.

But the corps says some areas downstream of the dam, such as Cusick, Newport, and Usk, could see flooding.

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