Concerns Of Dam Failure Prompt Evacuations In Lynchburg, Va.

04 August, 2018, 22:20 | Author: Orlando Hughes
  • Water is overflowing from College Lake and the dam may fail

The dam was intact Friday morning, the weather service said in an update, but water has been moving over it and into Blackwater Creek about 2 miles southwest of downtown Lynchburg.

A failure of the College Lake Dam could flood parts of Lynchburg with 17 feet of water in just seven minutes.

"Currently, they have found no seepage at the dam so it is considered stable", Jes Gearing, public information officer for Lynchburg Water Resources, said in a statement emailed to NPR.

Almost a hundred people have been evacuated from their homes in Lynchburg, Va., after an intense storm amid concerns that an aging dam might fail and unleash risky floodwaters.

Given the condition of the dam and the state of the lake, Perrow says, the most likely "fix" isn't actually a repair - he says the city is likely to tear the dam down completely and replace it with a bridge.

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Firemen waded through flood waters on Thursday in Lynchburg.

Joni Organ posted video on social media of water thundering powerfully down a swollen Lynchburg creek. This includes the following streams and drainages: James River, Blackwater Creek, Williams Run and Ivy Creek.

The city's Department of Emergency Services urged people living on a number of roads near the dam to evacuate Thursday night. Heavy rains have caused rising water and crews are using caution, CBS Roanoke affiliate WDBJ reports.

Water damage restoration and cleaning services have reported being inundated with calls for help from Lynchburg and surrounding area residents who have already returned to their homes. In all, some 26 million people live where a flash flood watch is in effect. A line of showers and storms was moving through the area Friday afternoon.

Authorities are concerned an overflowing dam in central Virginia is at risk of failing, and have ordered evacuations in the most threatened areas. The school said it is open Friday, though its entrance on Lakeside Drive was closed.

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