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DWR Officials: Significant Progress Made On Spillway, Evacuation Warning Remains

@CA_DWR / Twitter

@CA_DWR / Twitter

UPDATE 9:05 p.m.: The California Department of Water resources and local officials are informing residents downstream of Oroville that the spillway's status has not changed. An evacuation warning remains in place, meaning that residents should be ready to evacuate but have not been ordered to do so.

Charles Smith, a Sutter County public information officer, says a mistaken report by a Sacramento news station stirred rumors that an evacuation order had been issued. There was no evacuation order.

UPDATE 6:37 p.m.: Oroville Dam and flooding evacuees staying at the Silver Dollar Fairgrounds in Chico are now dealing with a Norovirus outbreak.

Butte County Public Health says more than a dozen people working or staying at the Fairgrounds are showing signs of the virus, similar to the flu.
The shelter is currently housing about a hundred people.
North State Public Radio reports the facility is no longer taking any new evacuees because of the illness.
Those seeking shelter should instead head to the Neighborhood Church of Chico.
Norovirus is commonly spread in public areas where people are eating and living in confined spaces, such as cruise ships.
- North Valley Public Radio

UPDATE 2:10 p.m.: Despite what Lake Oroville managers call significant progress on spillway erosion control, those living along the Feather River downstream from the reservoir, remain under an evacuation warning.

Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea says he thinks it's beneficial to keep it in place for now.

"But I'm aware of the concern that it causes," says Honea. "And so when I think that the risk is at a level that would make it appropriate to lift the warnings, we'll do that."

Honea also says should a need arise to re-issue an evacuation order, people can expect a longer warning period than what was experienced during the last order.

He says his office is working on plans to create an evacuation process that's more efficient using updated flood maps to pinpoint areas that must be evacuated.

According to Honea, another priority is having a more organized exit strategy for residents, as well as entrance pathways for emergency crews.

Update 12:15 p.m.: Oroville Lake has reached below 850 feet and the emergency spillway remains stable, operators said Monday.

During a noon brief meeting, officials also stated that outflows of 60,000 cubic feet per second will be maintained through the spillway. Currently, officials are anticipating inflows of about 50,000 cubic feet per second.

An evacuation warning, which means that residents can be at home, but they must be prepared to leave if conditions change, is in place. The evacuation center at the Chico Fairgrounds remains open for some residents who decided to stay there through the current storms.

Original Post: Officials with the California Department of Water Resources say water outflows from the Oroville Dam's spillway were increased to 60,000 cubic feet per second over the weekend.

The jump in water outflows, from 55,000 cubic feet per second to 60,000 cubic feet per second. 

Officials say the increase is a normal part of flood control operations. 

Officials will provide an update during a noon briefing Monday.

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