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Water still draining from partially failed dam

UPDATE 8/4/16: After the flash flood warning expired Thursday morning, Callaway County officials decided not to renew it.

As of Thursday evening, much of the water from Glover Spring Lake had drained out. County Commissioner Randall Kleindienst estimated about half of the water was gone. He said because so much water had been released, if the dam did have a full failure, only people in the immediate area of the dam would be in danger. He urged people to stay away from the washed out area of Highway 101 in front of the dam.

The county’s next step will be to have the state inspect the bridge on Highway 101 once the water stops draining from the lake. From there, they’ll work to rebuild the washed out areas of the road.

Callaway County Sheriff’s Office, Missouri State Highway Patrol, and MoDOT did create a precautionary plan if there was a full failure of the dam. Lieutenant Clay Chism said depending on the flood waters, Highway UU would likely be closed and possibly Highway O. Crows Fork Creek intersects with both of those highways. As of Thursday afternoon, only Highway 101 was closed.

Vance Vaughan is the president of the Homeowner’s Association for the lake. He said he has lived there since 1985 and has never seen something like this before. Vaughan said the dam was built in 1956 and can’t remember water breaching it before. He said the breach and failure surprised many of the nearby residents. Vaughan recalled one previous flooding incident but the water did not reach his home. This time he had four inches of water in his house.

Vaughan also said, he had no emergency plan in place because he didn’t know he needed one. He told ABC 17 News that, no matter what preventative measures they took nothing could have stopped what happened. Vaughan says he inspects the dam every once in awhile, and built spillway’s but the rain was too much for the area to handle.

Vaughan says he will meet with homeowners to see what is next and if they have to take a loan out. If a loan needs to be taken out, Vaughan says each homeowner will be responsible for a portion of it.

Rain is expected throughout the weekend, Mid Missouri counties say they aren’t too worried because people know what they should and shouldn’t do.

UPDATE 8/3/16:The flash flood warning has been extended to 9:00 a.m. Thursday

ORIGINAL STORY:A flash flooding warning is in effect until 12:45 a.m. Thursday because of a dam that is failing near Fulton, east of Columbia. Callaway County Emergency Management said they would reassess the situation at the end of the warning and decide if it should be reissued. The warning was set to expire at 4 p.m. Wednesday but was extended.

As of Wednesday evening, three roads were blocked off due to the concerns: County Road 108, County Road 101 and State Highway UU.

The National Weather Service in St. Louis issued the warning around noon Wednesday for Glovers Spring Lake off Route 101 and Route UU, less than 5 miles east of Fulton after splitting with Route O.

Callaway County officials say the July rainfall paired with the 8 inches of rain earlier this week caused the level of the lake to rise. Many homes near the lake were flooded Monday night and into Tuesday morning.

The high water levels caused the dam, which is made of rocks and dirt, to partially fail. The water created a gap in the dam and the water washed out parts of Highway 101.

The county officials are concerned that as the water continues to flow through the gap in the dam, it was continue to erode and cause a catastrophic failure.

The dam is privately owned by a home owner’s association so the county technically doesn’t have jurisdiction over it and cannot create a plan to dredge an area to help alleviate some of the water flow.

The agency is urging everyone along creeks in central Callaway County to move to higher ground.

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