Record storms battered Northern California in early February 2017, leading to historic flows into Lake Oroville, coupled with severe erosion damage to the Oroville Dam main spillway resulted in the emergency spillway being used for the first time in history. Erosion damage below the emergency spillway forced Dam authorities to release flows up to 100,000 cubic feet per second through the damaged main spillway in an effort to avoid a potential collapse of the spillway and catastrophic downstream flooding. The release through the damaged main spillway and emergency spillway resulted in the erosion of millions of cubic yards of debris into the Feather River.
The San Rafael Rock Quarry, Inc. – SRRQ (a Division of The Dutra Group), was called upon to lead a marine-based approach to removing debris from the river, and within 24-hours our workforce was onsite planning and implementing the mobilization of workers, equipment and resources to begin clearing the debris.
Within 10 days, over 200+ truckloads of equipment were mobilized, and a staging/ offload facility established at the Thermalito Diversion Pool, SRRQ was ready to commence dredging when the Department of Water Resources shut down the massive spillway flows. Working in conjunction with other contractors, over 1-million CY of debris was removed from the river during the first spillway shut down period allowing flows to resume from the Hyatt Power Plant.
Mobilized 3 dredge barges, 9 material transport barges, 7 tug/workboats, support vessels, 300’ bulkhead offloading facility, a crane loadout & vessel haulout/repair facility, a crew & equipment support camp, haul roads, and a disposal stockpile;
Five different safety meeting locations needed to be held daily with over 60 crew members, 30 pieces of equipment to address the safety challenges of unloading and assembling Flexifloat barges, heavy equipment and crane barges, loading of forklifts and then floating all up river and under the Railroad Bridge. Implementation of JHA & Swift Water Rescue Boat team due to swift water near staging areas.