“It is their dam and we’re here to assist the city,” Miller said.
According to the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, a submerged hydraulic roller occurs due to the hydraulic conditions on the Vermilion River behind the Public Safety Building and Ellsworth Park dams because no riverbed protection was placed below the dam during construction. Over time, the turbulent forces generated by a hydraulic roller, have eroded a hole in the original river bed at the base of the dam. The tailwater submerges the hydraulic jump, creating the submerged hydraulic roller. These rollers typically pull in and hold objects, including people, which often leads to emergency rescues or drownings. There have been several deaths at the dams since 1935.
Removal construction could start this year with city council approval.