Residents Below the Oroville Dam Return Home as Massive Construction Project Continues to Repair the Damaged Spillway

100,000 cubic feet a second of water was being released down the damaged Oroville spillway in efforts to lower the lake to a level officials felt would be able to absorb the water from the next set of storms.

Today, officials lifted the mandatory evacuations of Oroville and other areas below the Oroville Dam on the Feather River. According to the Butte County Sheriff’s Office, “Due to lower lake levels, further inspections, ongoing work to shore-up the Oroville Dam emergency spillway and updated weather forecasts…the Evacuation Order …has been reduced to an Evacuation Warning.”

The Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said that while the safety of the public was the most important thing to consider, after constant monitoring of the dam by multiple agencies, the problems appear to have been mitigated.

One of those threats was the surface level of the lake which was lowered to keep water from flowing over the emergency spillway. With more storms on the way, officials wanted to reduce the lake’s level to one they felt confident would allow for the water from the upcoming storms to be taken in. Currently 100,000 cubic feet a second of water is being released over the damaged main spillway to drop the surface level to 850 feet. As of noon today the lake was 887 and inflow has dropped to 19,000 cfps.

While the evacuation order has been lifted, officials were still calling for an evacuation warning, wanting citizens to be situationally aware and prepared should the condition of spillways worsen.

Repairs to the dam continued with officials stating there were 125 different construction crews working on it. Helicopters and large trucks were moving an estimated 30 tons of rock per hour from a staging area near the dam.

Residents were returning to their homes throughout the day.

The Feather River raged near the hatchery in Oroville. Water released from the Oroville Dam has pushed the river towards but not over flood levels.

A stream of trucks delivered rocks that were being taken to the dam.

100,000 cubic feet a second of water was being released down the damaged spillway in efforts to lower the lake to a level officials felt would be able to absorb the water from the next set of storms.

An excavator loads boulders into a waiting truck.

A front end loader piles up recently deposited rocks.

A helicopter hovers while ground crew attach the sand bag to a cable.

Helicopters pass each other as they work on the Oroville Dam.

The ground crew steps back as a giant sand bag is lifted by helicopter.

  • Laytonville Rock
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18 comments

  • A billion dollar bill for STUPID state engineers/officials with their head up their -ss, and this is just the start. Boy do I wish for reverse karma!

    • Its a function of no one reading anymore. We write lots of things, but no one reads them. The emerGency spillway was always known to be dicy. It would give people the time they needed to get away from the dam if something failed. It worked beautifully.

  • Should have fixed it from the time they know!! Somebody sure made the wrong call!! And these big shots who make big bucks are going to cost the state BIG BIG BUCKS to fix it. Should be fired

    • Trump is a Russian rat. How the hell do you think he his fit for the most important job in the country? We are gonna be in WW3 all because of the things he has said and done, and you still stand behind him? That is stupidity at its finest.

      • Eyeroll.
        That’s been in the works for years. The UN is the war master. You want war to stop? Get rid of the UN. Blaming Presidents is childish. Remember Congress? Remember the Constitution? Only Congress can declare war. There hasn’t been a constitutionally declared war since WW2.
        Remember the Constitution? No allies, no foes. America minds their own business.
        Remember the House of Representatives? They hold the purse. They want war, they fund war. They want poverty? They fund unconstitutional agencies. They want a blackmarket? They fund wars against the citizens, while funding open borders to allow drugs to come in.
        Remember the Constitution? Our culture, our borders. We defend what’s ours. Our culture. Our Constitution. Our citizens from all walks of life.
        Those who play the party game, are what’s wrong with our country. The President has extremely little Constitutional authority. Party games pad the powers of partys by stealing powers away from the dumbed down masses.
        Not all of us went to Government ran public schools, thank God. Those who blame President’s instead of Congress surely did.

  • Who cares about the money at least the people below the dam won’t die reality check humboldt people

    • Sand bags, helicopters, dump trucks, engineers, Laborers, gasoline, backhoes, cement, emergency camps with food & aide, all grow on trees in Calif. They should send the funds back, should never have requested funds, Calif is smarter and better than the avg bear? They never get in a pickle?

  • Vote for more comucrats

    • I can only assume that’s supposed to be a portmanteau of “communist” and “democrats”, and intended in a derogatory fashion. Which is somewhat humorous, given as communist governments have usually been large proponents of infrastructure projects, and republicans were in both sacramento and the white house when the decision not to improve the spillway was made. Perhaps I’m reading your post wrong, and you’re agreeing that this problem might have been avoided if people had instead voted for democrats or communists?

      • It would have been avoided if the people voted for the Constitution instead of party favors.
        The infrastructure, not social issues, is Constitutional.
        The spillway in question, held concerns before the change of governor parties.
        Davis was recalled for many reasons, maybe turning blind eye to developers & unions was one reason? Maybe not. I haven’t asked my history buffs about it yet. Many variables and sabotaged plannings make up the heftiest part of politics. Like they say, 2 wings on the same bird.
        The people are mezmerized by idols of power, not understanding that they themselves are the true owners of the power. It is the people’s duty to jealously guard their power from thieves, and to take back through voting and nullification any powers stolen from them. When all the people retain their power, the bird stops flapping, comes home to roost where it belongs in it’s special box of enumerated and defined duties.

  • Lost Croat Outburst

    Looks like the manuals will have to be re-written yet again. So far, the explanation is that the emergency overflow was not armored with concrete because it was too expensive and UNLIKELY TO BE USED. Right. An example of brilliant engineers who are essentially stupid. We had massive flooding in 1862, 1955, 1964 but who cares? BFD. Screw the envoronmentalist liberals. See, I have a personal defensive handgun, but it’s never loaded because I probably will never need it.

    The brilliant engineers had five years of drought and low water levels during which the dam could have been examined and repaired. Resignations will be accepted.

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