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#289129 - 05/25/18 06:45 PM Dam poor conditions
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6773
Loc: southern Cal
The local grand jury released a report detailing conditions in Ventura County's dams, several of which are in bad shape, at risk of failure from flooding or major earthquake (not that we would ever have one of those in SoCal).

This is relevant because some 90 years ago, the St. Francis dam, located on a tributary of the Santa Clara River, burst, sending a wall of water some 140 feet high to the Pacific Ocean, killing some 450 people in the process...Today that region is even more developed and populated. Work is proceeding on redressing some of the problems, but the work ain't cheap nor easy.

Here is a link to the full report; https://media.keyt.com/npg-keyt-media-us...5115_ver1.0.pdf

What do they say, "Those who do not heed the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them"....
Geezer in Chief

#289132 - 05/25/18 10:30 PM Re: Dam poor conditions [Re: hikermor]
KenK Offline
"Be Prepared"

Registered: 06/26/04
Posts: 2026
Loc: NE Illinois
I was reading about the St Francis dam disaster a few months back. I'd never heard of it before that. Terrible!!!

If they can't maintain the dams it seems the second best bet is to let people know the predicted "death zone" downstream, so they know their risks.

On the somewhat opposite side of the spectrum, if you haven't heard of the "Peshtigo Fire", Google it. It happened at the same time as the much more famous Chicago Fire.

#289134 - 05/25/18 10:59 PM Re: Dam poor conditions [Re: hikermor]
ireckon Offline

Registered: 04/01/10
Posts: 1629
Loc: Northern California
Dam, that's terrible. These people should stock their homes/cars with life vests, small boats, etc. Anybody with a kayak, keep it. That will provide at least some hope if they get hit with 10 feet of water for example. Faced with a wall of water 140 feet high, that is a different story of course.
If you're reading this, it's too late.

#289135 - 05/25/18 11:45 PM Re: Dam poor conditions [Re: ireckon]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6773
Loc: southern Cal
I am pretty sure the initial wve would not have been 140 feet high all the way to the ocean, particularly as it approached the coastal plain. Today it would impinge upon my closest REI - fortunately they do stock kayaks and SUPs.....
Geezer in Chief

#289139 - 05/26/18 03:26 AM Re: Dam poor conditions [Re: hikermor]
Pete Offline

Registered: 02/20/09
Posts: 1361
Im not even sure that some of the 'good dams' will hold up ... in a strong quake. I drove past Lake Piru on the 5 Fwy (So. California) today, and I was wondering to myself ... what if - all that water spilled out? Its a huge volume of water. Same comments would apply to the dam on the Kern River at Lake Isabella.

Our state (CA) is going to have a really painful wake-up call when major temblors hit the area. They will come, we are way overdue.

Edited by Pete (05/26/18 03:27 AM)

#289140 - 05/26/18 03:56 AM Re: Dam poor conditions [Re: KenK]
hikermor Offline
Geezer in Chief

Registered: 08/26/06
Posts: 6773
Loc: southern Cal
I had heard of the Peshtigo fire, but I was unaware of the high death toll associated with the burn. I thought our recent Thomas Fire was big, but Peshtigo was five times larger.
Geezer in Chief


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