Advertisement

Dam spillway in Oroville, Calif., closed after large hole in concrete discovered

Heavy runoff from January and February rainstorms damaged the spillway.

By
Ed Adamczyk
Discovery of a massive hole in the concrete spillway of the Oroville, Calif., dam forced the spillway's closure Tuesday. Screenshot from KTXL-TV, Sacramento
Discovery of a massive hole in the concrete spillway of the Oroville, Calif., dam forced the spillway's closure Tuesday. Screenshot from KTXL-TV, Sacramento

Feb. 8 (UPI) -- Engineers say there is no threat to the Oroville, Calif., dam spillway, closed after massive sections of eroded concrete were noticed.

The state's Department of Water Resources stopped the flow of water Tuesday from the dam so inspections could be made. Cracks in the spillway, and a hole estimated to be 300 feet wide, are evident, and water flowing erratically down the spillway was gradually reduced Tuesday until it was shut off completely. The spillway can release water at the rate of 15,000 cubic feet per second, but heavy runoff from rainstorms in January and February damaged the slope. Water on Lake Oroville was released through slower paths in the dam.

Advertisement

The lake is now 20 percent below capacity, the agency said in a statement, with 'sufficient storage room to capture the inflow of rain showers expected through the rest of the week." It added there is no threat to the dam or to the public.

Latest Headlines