Seiche caused low water levels

News and analysis by Dan Telvock, Investigative Post's environmental reporter


People took to Facebook and Twitter Wednesday wondering why water levels for Lake Erie and its tributaries were abnormally low.

I thought I was going to have to make calls today to meteorologists and other weather experts to explain what happened, but our partners at WGRZ did it for us.

Channel 2 WGRZ discovered that a seiche is the culprit.

A seiche starts with a storm surge or high sustained winds from one direction that push the water up at the opposite — which in this case would be in Toledo, OH, — and cause the other side to drop like it did here in Buffalo.

Watch the video to see exactly what a seiche does to the water levels.

Here is a photo gallery WGRZ put together.