Lake Tahoma Dam: Latest on Evacuations in North Carolina Amid Danger of Failure

Evacuation orders from emergency authorities in McDowell County, North Carolina, have now been lifted after worries that heavy flash flooding and landslides had put the Lake Tahoma Dam at risk of failure earlier on Wednesday.

The National Weather Service's Greenville-Spartanburg station in South Carolina had sent out a post saying that a landslide "has compromised the integrity of Lake Tahoma Dam" and called on those affected by mandatory evacuations to follow the orders. Spilling around the sides of the dam had earlier been reported.

MCDOWELL COUNTY UPDATE: A landslide has comprised the integrity of Lake Tahoma Dam. MANDATORY EVACUATIONS underway from the Dam at Lake Shore Dr to Lake Tahoma Rd (NC 80) to the confluence of the Catawba River near Resistoflex Rd and Riverside Park. ACT NOW TO PRESERVE YOUR LIFE!

— NWS GSP (@NWSGSP) May 30, 2018

Authorities sent out a message later in the day saying that after inspections by an engineer, the areas below Lake Tahoma were no longer under emergency evacuation orders.

"MANDATORY EVACUATIONS underway from the Dam at Lake Shore Dr to Lake Tahoma Rd (NC 80) to the confluence of the Catawba River near Resistoflex Rd and Riverside Park," the weather service had tweeted early in the morning, "ACT NOW TO PRESERVE YOUR LIFE!"

McDowell County's emergency management service wrote in a Facebook post that western and central parts of the county were seeing flooding and landslides. In an emergency message, the service had said that the evacuation of areas below the lake were due to "recommendation from dam engineers."

Engineers were only able to evaluate the dam during daylight hours, the message had read. People in the affected communities were told to head to shelters at the YMCA of Marion, Glenwood Baptist Church and Old Fort Baptist Church.

Although the emergency evacuation has been lifted, flood warnings are still in effect.

McDowell county emergency management reports water is spilling around the sides of Lake Tahoma dam. Evacuations ongoing south of the dam. THIS IS A LIFE-THREATENING SITUATION. HEED ALL EVACUATION ORDERS IMMEDIATELY! If you are not threatened by floodwaters, shelter in place.

— NWS GSP (@NWSGSP) May 30, 2018

Updated | This article was updated to reflect the emergency evacuation orders being lifted.