Worst Case Scenario: 100 Foot Tsunami Would Wipe Out Entire Cities If There Is A Catastrophic Failure Of The Oroville Dam

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Top Tier Gear USA


The situation at the Oroville Dam has stabilized for the moment, but more storms are coming this week.

When those storms arrive, will authorities be able to avoid the kind of catastrophic incident that almost happened over the weekend?  As you will see below, it is being admitted that a collapse of the emergency spillway at Lake Oroville would have sent a “30-foot wall of water coming out of the lake” and into local communities.  At one point authorities were concerned that such a collapse was imminent, and that is why they ordered the evacuation of nearly 200,000 people.  But many are also concerned that more storms could ultimately cause a catastrophic failure of the infrastructure at the dam that would bring about a “worst case scenario”.  According to the experts, if that were to occur we could potentially see a 100 foot tsunami of water wiping out entire cities.

At 770 feet tall, the Oroville Dam is 44 feet taller than the Hoover Dam.  In fact, it is actually the tallest dam in the United States, and it is a crucial part of the network that supplies water for southern California and the key agricultural regions of the state.

The dam was built between 1962 and 1968, and that was during an era when great infrastructure projects were happening all over America.  But now many of those great infrastructure projects are showing their age and are crumbling right in front of our eyes.

So how did we get to the point where entire towns were almost wiped out?  The following is a pretty good summary of the events that we have witnessed so far

The problems started last Tuesday, when a hole opened up in the Oroville Dam’s primary spillway. The collapse in this main, concrete-lined spillway led authorities to take an unprecedented step by the end of the week, as heavy storms mounted. On Saturday, the state water agency opened up the dam’s emergency spillway for the first time ever. Its collapse would have sent a “30-foot wall of water” crashing out of the lake reservoir, according to the Los Angeles Times. The emergency spillway, also described as the auxiliary spillway, is more or less a hill that drains down into the Feather River.

Fortunately the emergency measures that were taken over the weekend averted a major collapse of the emergency spillway, but it was a very close call.

Nearly 200,000 people were ordered to evacuate just in case, and needless to say this created a lot of panic and roads that were extremely clogged as local residents scrambled to get away from potential disaster…

“What was usually a 20-minute drive took two hours,” said Heather Sutton, 22, a Yuba Community College student. “It was bumper to bumper. … You can almost see the panic happening.”

Sutton recalled telling her friend before they evacuated that “we need to grab photos, anything that has sentimental value.” Everything else was left behind, she said.

The sudden evacuation panicked residents, who scrambled to get their belongings into cars and then grew angry as they sat in bumper-to-bumper traffic hours after the order was given.

And it is a very good thing that authorities did order the evacuation, because we came very, very close to seeing a “30-foot wall of water coming out of the lake”.  The following comes from the L.A. Times

The biggest concern was that a hillside that keeps water in Lake Oroville — California’s second largest reservoir — would suddenly crumble Sunday afternoon, threatening the lives of thousands of people by flooding communities downstream.

With Lake Oroville filled to the brim, such a collapse could have caused a “30-foot wall of water coming out of the lake,” Cal-Fire incident commander Kevin Lawson said at a Sunday night press conference.

Of course that isn’t the worst case scenario.

The worst case scenario would be if there is a catastrophic failure of the infrastructure holding Lake Oroville back from pouring into the communities below.  With more storms heading for the region, authorities are trying very hard to prevent that from happening.  The following comes from the Daily Mail

Officials have been inspecting the nation’s tallest dam since first light this morning in a desperate effort to stop a devastating 100-foot tsunami from being unleashed, as 200,000 people remain under evacuation orders across California despite water levels dropping over night.

Concerned authorities warned in the worst case scenario a complete structural breakdown at the emergency spillway of Oroville Dam would unleash a torrent of water that would engulf Oroville within an hour.

The ensuing flood from the 770-foot dam would catastrophically put the city of Oroville and several other low-lying communities along the Feather River under 100ft of water.

Could you imagine what that would look like?

It would be a flooding disaster unlike anything that we have ever seen in modern American history.

So let us hope that the storms coming to the area later in the week are not as bad as anticipated

Forecasters anticipate a moderate storm Wednesday with a “really big and strong” storm Friday, said Brandt Maxwell, National Weather Service meteorologist. Another 8 inches of rain could fall in the mountains before draining into Lake Oroville, and that would increase the flow of water at the dam where severe erosion could drop the top of the spillway enough for water to pour out uncontrolled.

Eight inches may not sound like a lot to you, but the truth is that is a tremendous amount of rain.

If the region really does get that much precipitation, Lake Oroville will once again be bursting at the seams and more evacuations may be necessary.

This entire crisis is just another example of how America’s critical infrastructure is literally falling apart all around us.  In California alone, Governor Brown has identified 100 billion dollars worth of key projects that urgently need to be done, and Oroville Dam was not even on that list

A list of $100 billion of “key” infrastructure projects that California Gov. Jerry Brown’s office targeted this month for investment statewide includes raising Folsom Dam to improve flood protection but doesn’t specifically mention Oroville Dam.

The priority list prepared by California follows calls by President Donald Trump for $1 trillion in infrastructure projects nationwide. The list was prepared at the request of the National Governor’s Association.

President Trump is certainly right to want to address our massive infrastructure crisis, but where is he going to get the money?

We are already 20 trillion dollars in debt, and we are adding more than a trillion dollars a year to that total.

Every extra dollar that the federal government spends is another dollar that we have to borrow, and foreigners are already heavily reducing their holdings of U.S. debt.

So I definitely applaud President Trump for wanting to do something about our crumbling infrastructure, but unless he can make money grow on trees it may be difficult to actually accomplish the big goals that he is envisioning.

Read Also “THIS IS NOT A DRILL”: Spillway at tallest US dam in California about to collapse, immediate evacuation ordered

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Contributed by Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse.

Michael Snyder is a writer, speaker and activist who writes and edits his own blogs The American Dream , The Truth and Economic Collapse Blog.

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  • Frank

    Liberal activist Californians said that they wanted to secede from the Union, in protest of President Donald Trump’s election, so now is a great time for them to prove their independence – by NOT asking for any Federal financial assistance to make repairs to state infrastructure.
    We all know that’s not gonna happen, as we know that Liberals are, above all else, Hypocrites.

    • DixieAngel_76

      If only we could get the liberals to leave and let the rest of us run the state.

  • tscull

    I say to hell with CA! That’s the last state that should be receiving any assistance with their infrastructure. Let them employ all of those friendly illegal aliens that will do the jobs that Americans won’t do and get that dam all fixed up pronto! Oh, that’s right, they are mostly uneducated and don’t have the skills to do anything but pick produce and work at fast food places, and collect welfare in any and every way possible. Yep, CA needs to secede and put all those “useful” people to work!

  • Mark Williams

    I hate you, your Family and everything you stand for. Now, that being said, can I borrow $1,000,000,000.00?

  • Wayright2

    I’d say the people living in the area below the dam should be getting a huge reduction on their property taxes.

    • CCblogging

      no doubt

    • DixieAngel_76

      I don’t know about that but they’re about to be getting a lot of free water soon. I don’t mean to make fun of the people themselves, most probably had no way of knowing this would happen, but I do blame the government officials who were evidently sleeping at the switch.

  • CCblogging

    Living near rivers in flood zones can be hazardous to your health. I prefer higher ground.

  • DixieAngel_76

    As a lifelong Californian even I can say that it is stunning how short sighted our government is, and how stupid must the voters be that keep giving them license to exercise that short sightedness. I hope this will wake a lot of them up, but probably not.

  • Sir TuberKopf

    Not that it would guarantee survival, but if you lived the area, would you have at hand, bike helmets and life preservers for your family in the car and the house at all times, at least until the rainy season is over, and the dam is fixed.

    I’m not even in a 10,000 year flood zone, and I store life preservers and an axe in the attic at all times. In rising waters you need a way to get out fast.

    I loved the line from Jurasic Park, “life will find a way”. It’s a good slogan for people who prep. Live downstream of this dam and and own a boat etc, so you have life vests already, where are they right now?

  • huntress

    Hey gubnor moonbeam, get your illegals to help you with your problems. One can only hope the dam sinks the whole state into the ocean, and please sink hollyweird first.