Due to the heavy rains from Hurricane Irene, St. Mary's County issued a potential St. Mary's Lake Dam failure notification.
Irene had poured more than 7 inches of rain in the area by the time the Code Red notification at 10:40 p.m. People who live downstream from the dam are threatened by the possibility of significant flooding.
“The dam itself at St. Mary’s River Park is holding well,” said Christy Bright. “There is no imminent danger or possible danger with the dam itself. What is happening is that the level of the lake is rising, which is going to cause water to enter a spillway, which is a proactive measure to safeguard the residents from the dam and also keep the potential weight off the dam."
There is still a long way to go before the water crests and goes over the spillway. In that event, 28 residents could be affected. Those that can evacuate should. Those that can’t should go to an upper level of their homes.
They are advised to take the following precautions:
- Move family and pets upstairs or to a high place with a means of escape.
- Turn off gas, electricity and water supplies if flood water is about to enter your home and it is safe to do so. DO NOT touch sources of electricity when standing in flood water.
- Keep listening to local radio for updates.
- Flood water can rise quickly. Stay calm and reassure those around you.
- Avoid walking through flood water.
- Keep children, pets and vulnerable people away from flood water.
- Wash your hands thoroughly if you touch flood water.
- Do not drive through flood water. About 60 percent of all flood deaths are people in vehicles that are swept away by moving water.
Hurricane Irene has caused damage and injuries around the region.
- A tree blocking Guinea Road at Argon Road in Fairfax County won't be cleared until about 6 a.m.
- In Fairfax County near George Mason University, a tree fell on a house in the 5000 block of Coolridge.
- Also in Fairfax County, streets flooded in the Huntington area coinciding with high tide, according to county spokesperson Merni Fitzgerald.
- A downed tree shut down the Battlefield Parkway from Balls Bluff Road to the Leesburg Bypass in Loudoun County. It was reopened before 11 p.m.
- A tree reportedly fell in the 3200 block of Cameron Mills Road in Alexandria, knocking out a street light and blocking the steet.
- Authorities reported a woman in Dale City required medical treatment after a tree fell on her. Prince William County officials said the woman suffered a broken leg.
- Shelters opening in at least 14 counties and 12 cities, including Norfolk, Virginia Beach and Hampton.
- A viewer reported six trees are down in a cul-de-sac in the 44500 block of Birch Way in California, including two that crashed through her roof. Other homes on the street also were damaged, she said.
- A large tree fell down on electrical wires, closing Bell Alton Newtown Road in La Plata from Charles Street to Route 301. Crews probably won't be able to get to it until 4 a.m.
- Prince George's County Fire and EMS Department Mark Brady said a large tree came down in the parking lot of an apartment complex in the 6900 block of Seat Pleasant Drive in Seat Pleasant. It landed on four cars.
- Gov. Martin O'Malley said in a 5:30 p.m. press conference that 5,000 Maryland residents were in the 20 shelters set up by the state. The governor said on Saturday afternoon 36,000 were without power.
- Mandatory evacuations ordered for Ocean City, coastal Worcester County, homes near cliffs in Calvert County.
- A tree fell on power lines in the 3600 block of Idaho Avenue NW.
- A huge tree fell on to a house on Rodman Street at 48th Street in Northwest, partially collapsing a wall.
- A tree fell on Massachuseets Avenue NW at the Naval Observatory. Massachusetts was closed for several hours but reopened before 6 a.m.
- Several trees fell into a house in the 3900 block of Edmunds Street NW.
- Downed wires shut Southern Ave between East Capitol Street and 63rd Street in the Northeast.
- A downed tree has A Street closed between 17th and 18th streets SE.
- A large tree crushed an unoccupied parked car in the 3800 block of Jenifer Street NW.
- Anticipated flooding has closed Broad Branch Rd NW between Brandywine Street NW and Ridge Road NW.
- Anticipated flooding caused the closure of Kalmia Road NW between East Beach Drive NW and West Beach Drive NW.