California’s Oroville Dam about to overflow.

Apparently that state can’t catch a break.  It’s been raining in California this winter at record-breaking levels — much to the relief to state residents I’m sure — and now the dam’s literally bursting:

An evacuation has been ordered for low-lying levels of Oroville and several areas downstream from Lake Oroville, the Butte County Sheriff’s Office said.

“Officials are anticipating a failure of the Auxiliary Spillway at Oroville Dam within the next 60 minutes (5:45 p.m.),” the California Department of Water Resources said on Facebook.

OK, so the dam is just too full and probably won’t actually burst.  Which means that ‘literally’ is being misused.  But I don’t care.  This post approaches the line of what I’ll post about these days as it is, and if we discuss infrastructure at all it WILL go over that line.

6 thoughts on “California’s Oroville Dam about to overflow.”

  1. I think we can discuss this without getting too political: Infrastructure spending may not be sexy, but eventually the time comes when you notice if you do not spend resources on it. The piper always demands his due, as it were.

    1. I’d likely have mentioned the gods of the copybook headings .. but yeah.
      “Pay me now or pay me later, either way I get paid”..

  2. There’s nothing political about a 30 foot wall of water, and if those spillways or the hillside into which they are built undermine all the way to the main pool…. then Oroville dam will burst like a pin-pricked balloon, there will be no pretense of ‘controlled release’, and mankind will get a humility-inducing lesson in the power of nature and our ability to control it.
    There’s apparently just been more water coming into the lake than the design accounted for, and the designers are probably all dead of old age by now.

    1. Overall agreement, however it’s worth noting that deficiencies in Oroville spillways were noted in ’08 and again in ’13, so ..
      While I pity anyone living below the thing, it’s a rather tempered pity.

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