A gaping hole was discovered in the Oroville Dam main spillway on Feb. 7, marking the start of a catastrophic situation that unfolded over the course of several days.
The Hyatt Power Plant stopped functioning as a massive mound of concrete, earth and debris formed in the channel below the 3,000-foot concrete spillway, which fractured Feb. 7th. Since then, heavy machinery has been brought in to clear away all of the spillway’s concrete that had pilled up.
The Department of Water Resources has been providing updates, as crews continue to work to restore power to the plant’s hydraulic turbines, which could happen as early as this weekend officials said.
State officials said Thursday that approximately 110,000 cubic yards of debris have been removed, and the water in the channel has dropped substantially. Electrical crews have been working to reconnect the power plant to the electrical grid.
On Thursday, Department of Water Resources said that the water levels in the reservoir remained below the lip of the nearby emergency spillway, which was over-topped last month, prompting evacuations of nearly 200,000 nearby residents.