Lake J.B. Thomas Sees Highest Lake Levels in Decades

Lake J.B. Thomas Sees Highest Lake Levels in Decades

by Justin Kree

NewsWest 9

LAKE J.B. THOMAS - Lake J.B. Thomas is one of the main water supply sources for the Permian Basin. With all the rain this past weekend, officials haven't seen lake levels this high in decades.

"The last time that Thomas had this much water was back in September of 1987," John Grant, General Manager for the Colorado River Municipal Water District, said.

Just a few short days of rain has allowed billions of gallons of water to replace a lake that was quickly drying up.

"Lake Thomas right now is about 45% full. Thursday, it was less than 2% full. So, this morning, Thomas has come up 35 vertical feet," Grant said.

The rest of the rain water that poured over the Thomas water shed will make its way to the lake.

"We think we'll see some more rise in the level at Lake  J.B. Thomas. It's like a big bowl. As you get more water in the bowl and the bowl is bigger at the top, it doesn't rise quite as fast," Grant said.

With all this rain, is West Texas finally out of the drought?

"The drought is not over. We want to make sure everyone understands. It took us a few years to get us into this drought and one rain is not going to get us out," Grant said.

Grant tells NewsWest 9, last week's rain will allow the area to have enough drinking water for two to three more years.