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Risk Of Orange County Dam Failure Elevated To High




Storm waters flow steady down the Santa Ana River in Orange where lots of homeless people camp.
Storm waters flow steady down the Santa Ana River in Orange where lots of homeless people camp.
Erika Aguilar/KPCC

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The Army Corps of Engineers reports the dam protecting much of Orange County from catastrophic flooding urgently needs shoring up.

Prado Dam controls surges along the Santa Ana River. It protects 29 downstream communities housing nearly one-and-a-half million people. The dam sits along the 91 freeway where Orange and Riverside Counties meet.

As the LA Times reports, the Army Corps announced this week Prado Dam risk characterization has been raised from moderately urgent to high urgency. What does that mean?

Guests:

Louis Sahagun, staff writer for The Los Angeles Times who’s been following the story; he tweets at @LouisSahagun

Lillian Doherty, division chief of the operations division at the Army Corps of Engineers, Los Angeles District 

Martin McCann, adjunct professor, civil and environmental engineering and director of the National Performance of Dams Program at Stanford University