Want a real-time look at what’s going on in the rapids between the 13th and 14th Street bridges? Thanks to the U.S. Geological Survey, that live view, along with a lot more information than you’ll ever need, are available online.
The USGS, in partnership with the Columbus Water Works, installed the live camera atop one of the structures on the Frank K. Martin Bridge. Viewers can access the live feed and even manipulate it to get views upstream or down.
The camera is one of seven the USGS has installed on Georgia waterways. There’s another on the Chattahoochee, in Helen, where it’s little more than a creek. Others are on Peachtree Creek in Atlanta, Sweetwater Creek in Austell, th Flint River in Albany, Savannah River in Savannah and the Brunswick River in Brunswick.
The camera in Columbus is sponsored by the Columbus Water Works. All the others in Georgia are sponsored by the USGS National Stream Flow Information Program, whatever that is.
In addition to the camera, the USGS has installed a “streamgage,” which provides information about the flow and level of the river at that point. According to a USGS release, the gauge allows the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers valuable information on water resources and the National Weather Service information to help with flood predictions.
As a bonus to that, it provides a real-time gauge of water flow for whitewater enthusiasts.
"USGS is excited to have installed this new streamgage that has the potential to benefit a wide range of people in the community and its surrounding areas," said Brian McCallum, assistant director of the USGS Georgia Water Science Center.