The South Yuba River Citizens League, parent organization of the Yuba Riverkeeper, released the following statement on February 13, 2017 regarding the threat posed by the Oroville Dam Spillway. Yuba Riverkeeper is monitoring the situation and regular updates on the crisis can be found on their website here.
The South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) commends all the public safety officials who responded quickly and valiantly during the evacuation of the Oroville area and the communities along the Feather River corridor. Our hearts go out 180,000+ people who had to flee their homes because of the flash flood danger caused by the failing auxiliary spillway. We also commend and thank the agencies, fairgrounds, schools, churches and community centers who are opening their doors to accommodate thousands of displaced families.
The Oroville Dam spillway situation is extremely concerning. Friends of the River (FOR), the Sierra Club and SYRCL raised this issue in 2005, and are mentioned in a recent San Jose Mercury News article. As members of the Yuba Feather Workgroup from 2001, SYRCL, the Sierra Club, and FOR were engaged in the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) process about Oroville Dam in order to improve flood control, trying to make our communities safer.
Caleb Dardick, Executive Director of SYRCL, said, “Once the danger has passed, we will have time to do a full analysis of this situation, especially how extreme flood events will impact the future of public safety and river management in Northern California.”
“Right now, our efforts should focus on keeping our community safe. Later we will have time to ask hard questions and we hope that our state and federal officials, environmental groups and other community groups will come together to support one another in seeking answers.”