The Ballard Locks will be closed for 10 hours on Tuesday and Wednesday (Sept. 18 and 19) this week for dive operations. The closures will be in effect from 6am to 4pm each day, and the locks will be closed to all marine traffic but emergency vessels.
According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, divers will inspect a saltwater drain screen structure immediately upstream of the locks and inspect the large lock chamber work gates. The drain screen is used to prevent salmon from entering the locks’ saltwater return intake; divers will open 10, 10-foot-by-6-foot doors and inspect the 30-by-60 foot curved-front, mesh screen structure. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers closes the doors and inspects the structure annually before salmon migration season begins mid-June and reopens the doors mid-September.
The work gate inspection is in preparation for the upcoming large lock annual maintenance closure, happening in late October. This year the large chamber will close October 29 and reopen November 21.
Photo from the Locks Facebook page, of last year’s locks tours