Hundreds evacuated in Virginia after dam overflows

Clay Curtis
August 4, 2018

Additionally, Community Development officials will be assessing buildings to ensure they are safe for the return of people.

Giving an update just before 2 p.m. ET, Gearing told TheBlaze, "At the moment, the dam is stabilized with no immediate fear of failure".

"Should a dam failure occur, water along Blackwater and Ivy Creeks may rise several feet within a few minutes, with very swift currents", the bulletin said.

The National Weather Service reported if the dam does fail, "the water depth at Lynchburg could exceed 17 feet in 7 minutes".

The weather service said that College Lake was at "near capacity" after up to 15 centimetres of rain fell on Thursday evening (Friday NZT).

A flash flood watch has been extended for parts of Virginia into Saturday morning as rain is expected to continue into the weekend.

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The city of Lynchburg is the closest settlement downstream of the structure.

"I think I know some people who are going to be moving tonight", Organ says in the video. 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.

Those whose homes are considered at risk due to flooding have been moved to temporary shelters, per the News & Advance, which notes some 5,200 residents of Lynchburg and Timberlake were without power Friday morning.

The heavy rain in Virginia is part of a sprawling weather system bringing the threat of flooding all the way from the Carolinas to New England.

After engineers preformed the assessment on the dam, they found there was no seepage in the area. The school said it is open Friday, though its entrance on Lakeside Drive was closed.

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