DNR conservation officers evacuate people and pets during historic flood and pandemic

Nearly 24 hours before the Edenville Dam in Midland County collapsed, Michigan Department of Natural Resources conservation officers began evacuating people in homes and businesses positioned downriver of the dam – in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. The following evening, just before dark, the first dam collapsed – creating life-threatening, flash flood conditions that forced a mandatory evacuation for the city, including residents, businesses, medical facilities and Dow Chemical’s headquarters. The initial dam breach caused the failure of a second area dam, creating historic regional flood levels and unrepairable damage to local waterways. More than 20 conservation officers from throughout the region responded with 10 DNR patrol vessels and search and rescue equipment to help evacuate flood victims and provide emergency response as needed during the historic event.