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Mandatory Evacuations in NC Due to 'Life-Threatening' Floods

Landslides have 'compromised' integrity of Lake Tahoma Dam, evacuations mandated
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted May 30, 2018 6:38 AM CDT
Stock photo.   (Getty Images/dlanier)

(Newser) – When you live near a major dam, the last thing you want to hear is that the integrity of it has been "compromised" by landslides. But that's exactly what residents living below North Carolina's Lake Tahoma were told late Tuesday in a tweet from a local National Weather Service account. "MANDATORY EVACUATIONS," the post read, with specifics on who exactly in McDowell County should be getting out. "ACT NOW TO PRESERVE YOUR LIFE!" NBC News reports the flash-flood emergency warning to thousands came after an engineer checked out the dam, and after heavy rain had caused "significant and life-threatening flooding" throughout the county, per the NWS.

Weather.com says there were two landslides reported in the area, with local authorities noting the dam is in "imminent danger" of failing, per CBS News. Water was reported spilling out from the sides of the dam early Wednesday. "Floodwaters have reached levels not seen since the September 2004 floods associated with Hurricanes Frances and Ivan," the NWS says, per NBC. The communities of Marion and Old Fort are among those most severely affected. Heavy rainfall throughout several Southern states is linked to the storm Alberto, which took the lives of two South Carolina journalists Monday when a tree fell on their SUV. (A "once in 1,000 years" flood slammed a Maryland city—twice in two years.)

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