Summary of Rebuilding the Oroville Dam Spillways

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The Oroville Dam spillways were badly damaged in the 2017 flood and reconstruction began in May 2018. The project was fraught with difficulties, but the spillways were eventually completed and are now back in service.

  • 00:00:00 Rebuilding the Oroville Dam spillways was a massive and complicated undertaking, and it required the cooperation of a wide range of consultants and partners. After the main spillway failed in February 2017, the world watched as the emergency spillway was also damaged and eventually had to be used to evacuate the population. The reconstruction project was halted just before the next flood season was due, and the dam remains crippled and unable to safely discharge flood waters.
  • 00:05:00 The Oroville Dam spillways need to be rebuilt, and a design team has come up with a new option that uses a modified scour hole to see how it would perform in the event of a significant release. Unfortunately, the model showed enormous standing waves under peak flows, so the alternative was discarded. The design team then developed plans and specifications for construction of the new spillway, which is expected to take six months.
  • 00:10:00 The Oroville Dam spillways were badly damaged by the 2017 Oroville Dam flood, and reconstruction began in May 2018. Phase 1 of the reconstruction involved removing the old concrete spillway and replacing it with a reinforced concrete slab. Phase 2 of the reconstruction focused on the emergency spillway, which was damaged in the 2017 flood. The spillway was rebuilt with a stronger concrete weir and a cutoff wall to prevent erosion from progressing upstream.
  • 00:15:00 In 2018, after years of reconstruction, the Oroville Dam spillways were finally back in service. The project was fraught with difficulties, including the failure of the dam owner and regulators to recognize and address the inherent flaws in the structure. However, thanks to the efforts of those involved, the spillways were eventually able to handle releases, and the dam owner has since learned a hard lesson.
  • 00:20:00 The video discusses the rebuilding of the Oroville Dam spillways and how glasses wearer can help support the channel.

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