HOPE MILLS, N.C. — A dam burst Monday under the pressure of a rain-swollen lake, forcing the evacuation of about 40 houses and a rest home.

The dam on Hope Mills Lake broke about 10 a.m., said Doc Nunnery, Cumberland County emergency services director.

Police officers went to the homes and the Happy Valley Retirement Center to direct people to leave. A shelter was set up at a high school.

Most of the rest home's residents are ambulatory and the water was unlikely to reach them, but officials "didn't want to take any chances," Nunnery said.