Lake Isabella dam concerns after recent winter storms

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - As all eyes focus on the nation's largest dam, questions remain about our own dam, labeled the nation's most dangerous dam. And with record rainfall overwhelming Lake Isabella after a historic drought, it raises the question, could this happen in Kern County?

Recent winter storms brought heavy rain and snow to the golden state, especially here in Kern County. Although drought conditions are drastically improving, water is quickly filling Lake Isabella, putting more pressure on the dam.

For years, it was a disappointing scene as Lake Isabella water levels continued to diminish, but they're back on the rise as water flows down the mountaintops and into the lake.

But the lake is filling fast raising concerns over the safety of the dam.

The lake's capacity is 568,000 acre feet.

The Army Corps of Engineers will update the board of supervisors Tuesday on the progress of the Lake Isabella dam and spillway. Construction is expected to be completed in 2022.

At this point, experts are not concerned that rising water levels will pose a threat.


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