“Immediate evacuation from the low levels of Oroville and areas downstream is ordered. This is NOT A Drill. This is NOT A Drill. This in NOT A Drill,” says the statement posted on the Butte County Sheriff’s Facebook page.
‘THIS IS NOT A DRILL’: Residents in areas of Oroville, Calif. ordered to evacuate as dam is predicted to failpic.twitter.com/b49uOFvDDt
— Breaking911 Nature (@B911Nature) February 13, 2017
The statement refers to the Lake Oroville Dam, located 105 km (65 miles) north of Sacramento.
The dam’s spillway was “predicted to fail within the next hour,” the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) said at around 4:30pm PST Sunday (00:30 GMT Monday).
Evacuation shelter for residents evacuated from #Oroville located at the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds in Chico. 2357 Fair St, Chico #spillway
— Butte County, CA (@CountyofButte) February 13, 2017
“DO NOT TRAVEL NORTH TOWARD OROVILLE,” the Yuba County Office of Emergency Services said on Facebook, urging evacuees to travel safely in all other directions and help the elderly.
— King Zombie (@TotalZombie) February 13, 2017
— NWS Sacramento (@NWSSacramento) February 13, 2017
Heavy rains and snow that struck California this winter have resulted in the dam’s reservoir being filled up to the point of overspill. On Thursday, the works to release water from the dam began after chunks of concrete from the spillway were discovered in the channel below.
On Friday, only 7 feet (2 meters) were left until the dam was to reach its full capacity.
— Judy Brandt (@judywbrandt) February 13, 2017
The DWR has been using the emergency spillway instead of the damaged one to release the water.
— Sean Bennett (@tvseanb) February 10, 2017
— °•Cāleß L∆mßërt•° ✊ (@CaleLambert) February 11, 2017
— Drew Tuma (@DrewTumaABC7) February 13, 2017
The sheriff in Butte County, California has ordered an immediate evacuation of all people below the damaged Oroville dam, which is feared to be in danger of imminent collapse, Reuters reports.