KJZZ is a service of Rio Salado College,
and Maricopa Community Colleges

Copyright © 2024 KJZZ/Rio Salado College/MCCCD
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

World War II-era boat emerges from shrinking Lake Mead

A sunken boat dating back to World War II is the latest object to emerge from a shrinking reservoir that straddles Nevada and Arizona.

The Higgins landing craft that has long been 185 feet below the surface is now nearly halfway out of the water at Lake Mead.

The boat lies less than a mile from Lake Mead Marina and Hemingway Harbor.

It was used to survey the Colorado River decades ago, sold to the marina and then sunk, according to dive tours company Las Vegas Scuba.

Higgins Industries in New Orleans built several thousand landing craft between 1942 and 1945, the Las Vegas Review-Journal  reported. Around 1,500 “Higgins boats” were deployed at Normandy on June 6, 1944, known as D-Day.

The boat is just the latest in a series of objects unearthed by declining water levels in Lake Mead, the largest human-made reservoir in the U.S., held back by the Hoover Dam. In May, two sets of  human remains were found in the span of a week.

Experts say climate change and drought have led to the lake dropping to its lowest level since it was full about 20 years ago.

As water levels drop at both Lake Mead and Lake Powell upstream on the Arizona-Utah line, states in the U.S. West increasingly face deeper cuts to their supply from the Colorado River. The lower levels also impact hydropower produced at Hoover Dam and Glen Canyon Dam, which holds back Lake Powell.

Tags
Nick Sanchez is a senior producer for KJZZ's The Show. He joined the station as an intern during the spring of 2022, where he developed a passion for audio storytelling in the Valley.