An “atmospheric river” continued to batter parts of Northern California on Tuesday, causing widespread flooding. The heavy rains prompted the National Weather Service to warn of a dam failure outside Carson City, Nev., saying that it was “not a drill” and that residents should “move to higher ground now.” But less than 90 minutes after issuing the alert, the agency changed its report to say the retention basin in Dayton, Nev., had not failed. Instead, it was full and overflowing into drainage areas, the weather service said.
However, Lyon County, Nev., emergency officials warned that the situation could change in the next few hours. Dayton, Nev., with a population of about 9,000 people, is about a 13-mile drive northeast of Nevada’s state capital, Carson City.
Imminent failure of S. Dayton Retention Pond. Move to higher ground now. Areas affected include East Dayton: pic.twitter.com/TOQCEBjQmk
— Cassie Wilson (@CassieWilsonWX) February 21, 2017
Officials say between 2 and 4 feet of water could inundate areas of east Dayton within two to three hours of failure.
The areas affected include east Dayton including the following roads and streets: Comstock, Pottassi, Nugget, Sutro, Rancho, and Dayton Valley Road.
NWS Reno says “this is an extremely dangerous and life-threatening situation” and advises those in the area to move to higher ground now.
The flash flood warning is in effect until 6:40 p.m. Lyon County officials said crews are assessing opportunities to move water to more open areas.