By Elizabeth Zach, RCAC staff writer

Oroville Dam spillway damageEngineers are examining the damaged main spillway at Oroville Dam after a break there led to mass evacuations a few weeks ago. Along with geologists, they will try to determine how best to repair the eroded concrete.

They are unsure how long this work might take, but repairs could cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Their priority is to remove rock and debris that are preventing the Hyatt Powerplant at the dam’s base from operating, Bill Coyle, the acting director for the state Department of Water Resources, told the Los Angeles times. The surrounding communities depend on the plant for power and drinking water.

“Our goal is to aggressively attack the debris pile,” Coyle said. “Once this sort of gets into a zero-flow environment, it’ll be a little less stressful.”

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