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Diver Injured During Maintenance at Beech Mountain’s Buckeye Reservoir Causing Level 5 Water Restrictions

On Monday, November 19th, the Town of Beech Mountain and a private contractor began performing cleaning and maintenance on the gate release valve and assembly at Buckeye Reservoir. Late Tuesday afternoon a diver returned to complete closure of the valve and his leg was caught. Responders from Avery Sherriff’s Office, Avery EMS, Avery Emergency Management, Beech Mountain Police Department, Beech Mountain Volunteer Fire Department, Beech Mountain Utilities, Carter County Tennessee Water Rescue, Carolina Water Department, Elk Park VFD, Linville VFD, Linville Central Rescue, Red Cross and Watauga Emergency Management worked together to aid the rescue. Shortly after 10:00 pm the diver was successfully rescued and transported to Watauga Medical Center. The diver is in good condition this morning. The Town of Beech Mountain gratefully thanks all those who helped carry out a successful rescue operation. Because of the malfunction of the valve, the Town is deeply involved in stopping the loss of water from the reservoir. Engineers and Utility staff are reviewing and implementing modifications currently. The Town is at Level 5 water restriction and is coordinating with Emergency Management for possible emergency water distributions. Please stay tuned to media outlets and the Towns’ web page for more information.