Raleigh man called 911 to report dam breach as water was ‘roaring’

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Part of Milburnie Road in Raleigh was shut down Saturday night because of a dam breach.

The city of Raleigh is already in the middle of a $3 million restoration project on that dam. Officials believe the heavy rain Saturday night is what caused the breach in the temporary dam that the city built while they work on a project.

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Officials believe the heavy rain Saturday night is what caused the breach in the temporary dam that the city built while they work on a project.

Daniel Douglas has lived on Albemarle Avenue for the past seven years. He says he could see the lake was rising and he went outside to pull his boat up.

“When I came back out a few minutes later the lake had already dropped a foot so I knew something had to be up and when I looked down at the temporary dam I could see that it was breached,” Douglas said. “I mean, it was loud. It kind of sounded like a jet engine when all the water was roaring over and the foam and the rapids from the water churning it was pretty loud.”

He says as he soon as he saw the dam had breached he called 911.

“I knew there were houses downstream and if the whole dam for some reason collapsed that it would send a big wall of water heading downstream,” said Douglas.

The city of Raleigh has already begun work on a $3 million dam and spillway rehabilitation project for this area at Longview Lake. Officials said in 2014 that the dam already had seepage.

Raleigh officials say the current project will make the necessary improvements to the dam to make sure the area surrounding Albemarle Avenue is safe.

“We think it’s very important for all of the reasons,” said Gloria Putnam, who lives in the neighborhood. “It needs to be safe for people to go across it. The dam has not been used I think the roads been closed since 2006 so we’ve basically lived on a cul de sac since then and it’s certainly now it needs to be replaced.”

Neighbors say they’re looking forward to the project being completed and their neighborhood being reconnected.

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