Photograph of Oroville dam.Floods can and do happen. Not all floods are large. Even six inches of water in your home can cause thousands of dollars in losses. Potential flooding sources include: 

  • Yuba, Feather, and Bear Rivers
  • Goldfields
  • Creeks and small streams
  • Heavy periods of rain
  • Insufficient drainage, including clogged storm drains and ditches
  • Broken or backed-up sewer lines
  • Water runoff from impermeable sources, like cement

There are approximately 89 miles of reclamation-district maintained levees that protect Marysville, Wheatland, Linda, Olivehurst, Plumas Lake and other unincorporated areas. These levees are maintained and operated by local reclamation districts to help reduce the potential for a flood event.

Bullards Bar Reservoir, owned and operated by the Yuba County Water Agency, also helps to reduce flood risk by providing water storage and controlling the release of water into the Yuba River. Oroville Dam provides water storage and controls the release of water into the Feather River. Dam operations are coordinated to assist in preventing water releases from exceeding the rivers’ capacities.

Yuba County's Office of Emergency Services coordinates with the reclamation districts, YCWA and other agencies prior to and during high-water events.

Flood risk is figured by calculating the chance of flooding, depth of flooding, and the damages if a flood occurs. Properties located in low- to moderate-risk flood zones have a lesser chance of flooding than those in high-risk flood zones.

Properties in high-risk flood zones have a 25 percent chance of flooding over the life of a 30-year mortgage. However, 20 percent of all flood damage insurance claims come from low- to-moderate risk flood zones.

All property owners can reduce their flood risk by preparing a family emergency plan and an emergency kit.