U.S. dam fails, downstream community evacuated

10:48, July 25, 2010      

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A dam in the U.S. state of Iowa failed on Saturday, as heavy rain and rising water pushed a gap in its structure. Evacuation of a downstream community was ordered.

The dam is on Lake Delhi, part of the Maquoketa River. Water level in the river has been steadily rising because of torrential rains.

On Saturday, the rising water pushed a 9-meter gap in the berm alongside the dam, according to the National Weather Service. Roads on either side of the dam gave out as a result of the rainfall. The roads are part of the dam's containment measures.

Video from the scene showed massive amount of water gushing into the river from the pool behind the dam. Nearby buildings were under water.

Iowa Governor Chet Culver has ordered the National Guard to help. Evacuation was ordered for residents of the nearby Hopkinton, a town of 700 people. There are no reports of deaths or injuries.

The dam is about 70 kilometers north of Cedar Rapids, 380 kilometers west of Chicago. Lake Delhi was created in the 1920s by building the dam on the Maquoketa River.

Source: Xinhua

(Editor:王千原雪)

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