Failing dam threatens tiny Dakota town

The Associated PressApril 17, 2009 

— A convoy of trucks, excavators, bulldozers and backhoes moved in to fortify a seeping dam Thursday in eastern North Dakota as engineers and National Guard troops worked to save a tiny town that would flood if the dam fails.

Water was flowing like a miniature waterfall around a corner of the earthen Clausen Springs Dam, which protects the town of Kathryn, downhill and about six miles east. The water was eating through walls of the grass-lined spillway built to handle the extra water volume along a tributary of the flooding Sheyenne River.

If the dam fails, state Water Commission engineer Bruce Engelhardt said, "you'd have a large pulse of water going downstream."

Kathryn's 55 residents evacuated on Wednesday.

News & Observer is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service