Thursday, February 9, 2017

Things going from bad to worse

But never fear, Sgt. Jack Storm is on top of it!

Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea told the press Thursday afternoon that the Sheriff’s Office and Cal Fire-Butte County are preparing in case parts of Oroville and the surrounding area have to be evacuated because of the Lake Oroville spillway erosion.
Although he doesn’t anticipate having to evacuate, Honea said protecting the public means being prepared for the worst.
“I have assigned Sgt. Jack Storm to be in the command center. He will be monitoring the situation to determine if there is some future need for evacuations due to flooding,” Honea said. “If that’s the case we have a mechanism in place at the Butte County Sheriff’s Office to start dealing with that. That mechanism includes pulling patrol staff in to deal with that, as well as our volunteer auxiliary units including the Butte County Sheriff’s Office Search and Rescue.”
The Office of Emergency Services and Cal Fire-Butte County are also helping prepare for possible evacuations.
It's still raining, and over twice the volume of water is coming in to the reservoir as is going out. The authorities have recognized that the regular spillway is going to go downriver, and predicting how much back erosion will occur up the hill toward the gates is hard to say.  One thing is for sure, after seeing what can happen quickly to a concrete lined spillway, they really don't want to find out what will happen if an uncontrolled spill occurs over the nearby emergency spillway onto the bare ground.

The emergency spillway, bare earth on the right, the lake on the left.  If that erodes away....

The obvious risk there is the flow undermines the concrete berm there and suddenly opens up to the swollen lake behind it.  The fact that they have assigned the legendary Sgt. Jack Storm to the command center shows how worried they really are, but if anyone can save us and our towns and cities, it's Sgt. Jack Storm!


  1. If Jack can't save y'all, nobody can.

  2. Guess Jack Storm is better than Jack Shitt.

  3. Good coverage in the UK. None here. (FL)

  4. Someone on another site pointed out the obvious: there is no re-bar in that concrete.

    1. If you zoom-in on those photographs in the Daily Mail article, you can see what appears to be some sort of reinforcement bent over at the edges of the broken concrete. That said, the bars seem too thin and sparse.