Santa Monica Observer - Community, Diversity, Sustainability and other Overused Words

Twitter Finding Humor In Oroville Dam and Spillway Potential for Collapse

"The Russians Hacked It" tweets one local DWR official. "It's a Golden Shower."


February 22, 2017

"We're in for some extreme wetting."

The California Department of Water Resources (DWR) has ordered the immediate evacuation of the lower levels of Oroville, CA and the areas downstream. Lake Oroville went from 8-% full to over 100% full in just one week. The danger is not to the earthen dam itself, but to the emergency spillway which has been operated in full activation mode, for the first time in 48 years.

Some did try to find the humor in the situation, tweeting "California's about to get waterboarded!" or "The Russians Hacked It . . .it's a Golden Shower," under hashtags such as #notmydam #damlivesmatter #orovilledam.

"North Korea is pointing a missile at the dam right now!" "God, I miss Harambe." All references to recent news stories. "REPORTS STATE PUTIN WAS SPOTTED NEAR THE DAM LAST WEEK WITH A SHOVEL."

"They're literally draining the swamp!" There was a significant amount of debate over whether the people in the path of destruction were liberals, conservatives or illegal aliens. And whether California's drought was finally over. "Make the Dam Great Again--Mexico Will Pay For It!" "We're gonna build a dam and keep the water!" and "Here comes extreme wetting!"

"BLM says, Hands Up, Don't Swim! Fish lives matter!"

"This dam is a cis gendered white male, that needs to check its privilege."

"Bakersfield and Barstow have hotel rooms, guys," apparently a serious suggestion for the 130,000 people fleeing the situation.

"Make the Dam Great Again. Mexico will pay for it!"

The urgent e mail issued at 4:10 pm PST Sunday, reads:

This is an evacuation order. Immediate evacuation from the low levels of Oroville and areas downstream is ordered.

A hazardous situation is developing with the Oroville Dam auxiliary spillway. Operation of the auxiliary spillway has lead to severe erosion that could lead to a failure of the structure. Failure of the auxiliary spillway structure will result in an uncontrolled release of flood waters from Lake Oroville.

In response to this developing situation, DWR is increasing water releases to 100,000 cubic feet per second.

Immediate evacuation from the low levels of Oroville and areas downstream is ordered. This in NOT A Drill. This in NOT A Drill. This in NOT A Drill.


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