Cavalier Evacuees Can Return Friday at 7 a.m. - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Cavalier Can Return Home Friday 7 a.m., Officials Explain the Wait

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   Cavalier residents will have to spend one more night away from home.  An evacuation order will be lifted at 7 a.m. Friday.  That after the town was evacuated Tuesday night, because of fears the nearby, Renwick dam was going to wash out.

  By Thursday morning, the water was shrinking back from this boat landing. It's news the 13-hundred evacuated residents of Cavalier had been waiting to hear. The water level here at Renwick Dam dropped 1.2-feet overnight and has now been dropping at over an inch every hour.

  However, there's still a good 4-feet of water on this levee that was quickly built out of sandy soil to keep the dam's old, emergency spillway from washing away.

Craig Cluchei, City Councilman: "I'm kind of leaning toward what the Mayor and Gary Nilsson are talking. I think we need to wait at least another 24-hours."

  Plus, since the dam's outlet is running at full capacity, the river through town remains very high. So, the City's sewer system is also already running at full capacity and no one is here.  More pumps are being brought in today in an effort to get lift stations pumped down, before the entire town returns.

Ken Briese, Mayor: "Our biggest concern is to get the water pressure off our dam and upstream from the dam. Cooperative weather and sunshine should help us accomplish that."

  Briese says it's all been basically good news, since being told on Tuesday that chances were slim to none their dam was going to survive. This town could have been in the path of an entire   lake.

  However, when residents return home Friday morning, they're being asked to make sure sump pumps are not running into their home's sewer systems. Plus, they'll have to use water very sparingly for the next week.

  We also have a note from the Cavalier School. No classes on Friday. But, graduation will be held as scheduled on Sunday.

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