Video shows Minnesota dam on verge of failure

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Video shows Minnesota dam on verge of failure

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The Rapidan Dam in Blue Earth County, Minnesota, is in imminent failure condition, putting residents nearby on high alert as water levels continue to rise.

Blue Earth County Emergency Management officials posted on Facebook that anyone in imminent danger of rushing waters was notified of the situation.

“The Dam is currently intact and there is not an evacuation order in place for Blue Earth County residents,” officials said. “The situation is being monitored closely by BEC Public Works, Emergency Management, and the Sheriff’s Office.”

FOX 9 in Minneapolis reported that the alert notification from BEC stated they did not know if the dam would totally fail or remain in place, though officials determined it was necessary to issue the notification to let residents downstream of the dam know about the situation.

WATER POURING OUT OF RURAL UTAH DAM THROUGH 60-FOOT CRACK, PUTTING NEARBY TOWN AT RISK

The Rapidan Dam in Blue Earth County, Minnesota, is in imminent failure condition, according to local officials. (Credit: Randy Hanson /TMX)

Mankato Police and Fire posted on Facebook Monday afternoon that the water level at the dam was 28 feet. The levee system is built to withstand a river capacity up to 39.5 feet.

“According to Blue Earth County officials, if Rapidan Dam becomes compromised, they estimate that there would be up to a 2 ft. surge in the river level,” the post read. “This remains a developing situation and the City of Mankato is confident the levee system will hold and there are no areas currently in the City of Mankato that are under evacuation orders.”

The post also noted that there was an increased amount of activity by Xcel Energy around Sibley Park, as 170 employees from Xcel and about 400 pieces of equipment are being maneuvered to protect a nearby substation.

RUSSIANS STAGE A RARE PROTEST AFTER DAM BURSTS AND HOMES FLOOD NEAR THE KAZAKH BORDER

Water rushing around the Rapidan Dam

A building is swept away near the Rapidan Dam. (Credit: Randy Hanson /TMX)

Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz and state emergency response officials provided an update on the situation Monday morning.

“We are continuing to monitor the status of the dam with local officials,” Homeland Security and Emergency Management Director Kristi Rollwagen said. “We were made aware of the situation about 4 a.m. this morning. We’re also looking at the communication cell towers in the area and working to get resources down there to support cellular communications. Right now, the integrity of the dam is intact, but we will continue to monitor it and be aware of what’s going on.”

Walz said the structural integrity of the dam has been a question for a long time.

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Making matters worse, the National Weather Service issued a Flash Flood Warning for the county until 4:30 p.m. on Monday.

The station reported that all the exit and entrance ramps on Highway 169 at Lookout Drive in Mankato and North Mankato have been closed as officials construct an earthen dike, or a temporary berm or ridge of compacted soil used to divert runoff to a desired location.

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