Simon Lang, Peter Hill, Wayne Graham
The empirical method developed by Graham (1999) is the most widely used in Australia to estimate potential loss of life from dam failure. It is likely to remain that way while spatially based dynamic simulation models are not publicly available (e.g. LIFESim, HEC-FIA and LSM). When the Graham (1999) approach was first developed the prevalence of spatial data and the speed of computers was much less. In addition, most people did not have mobile phones, social media was in its infancy, and automatic emergency alert telephone systems were 10 years from being used in Australia. Graham (1999) was intended to be applied to populations at risk (PAR) lumped into a discrete number of reaches. The selection of fatality rates for the PAR in each reach was based on average flood severity and dam failure warning times. Today, there is typically much more spatially distributed data available to those doing dam failure consequence assessments. Often a property database is available that identifies the location of each individual building where PAR may be, along with estimates of flood depths and velocities at those buildings. News of severe flooding is likely to be circulated by Facebook, Twitter and e-mail, in conjunction with official warnings provided by emergency agencies through radio and television and emergency alert telephone systems.
This raises the question of how Graham (1999) is best applied in today’s digital age. This paper explores some of the issues, including the estimation of dam failure warning time, using Graham (1999) to estimate loss of life in individual buildings and the suitability of Graham (1999) for estimating loss of life for very large PAR.
Keywords: loss of life, dam safety, risk analysis.
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John Grimston, David Leong, Robin Dawson
The Angat Multipurpose Project, originally constructed in the 1960’s, is located 60 km north-east of Manila, and provides power, irrigation and domestic water supply and flood mitigation. The major water-retaining structures of the scheme are a 131 m high main rockfill dam and a 55 m high rockfill saddle dam.
Previous seismology studies have identified the presence of a possible branch of the West Valley Fault crossing under the saddle dam. If the fault dislocated, the branch under the saddle dam could produce horizontal and vertical shear displacements. Further, earthquake shaking poses a risk outside the fault zone. If the main dam/saddle dam were to fail in such an event, there would be major consequences in respect to both the water supply (serves a population of approximately 10 million) and the large population living below the dams. The dams are thus in the highest hazard category under any internationally accepted standard.
A study to investigate the dam safety aspects and identify remediation works which would bring the seismic performance of the main dam/saddle dam system up to an acceptable level was undertaken and included:
The main conclusions were:
Keywords: Dam, Remedial, Seismic, Fault, Spillway.
Richard R. Davidson, Nate Snorteland , Doug Boyer, John France
The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has embarked upon a monumental journey in applying risk-informed decision making in the management of the safety of the 650 major dams for which it is responsible. This process has shifted safety criteria from fully deterministic to a probabilistic basis. There has also been a shift from de-centralized district-based decision-making to centralized management of resources through the new Risk Management Center (RMC) and the Senior Oversight Group (SOG), a group of senior engineers and managers from across the USACE organization. The risk process began about five years ago with a portfolio prioritisation using screening-level risk assessments of the entire dam inventory, culminating in Dam Safety Action Classifications (DSAC) for each of the dams. Based on this risk prioritisation, Issue Evaluation Studies (IES) were initiated for the highest risk DSAC I and II dams, with each study including detailed failure mode and risk analyses for each dam. Because the Corps was relatively new to dam safety risk analyses, and their dam design history was one of following codified manuals of practice, various risk tools were prepared to provide guidance when assessing the risk of potential static, seismic and flood failure modes, as well as life loss and economic consequences of dam failure. Although these tools provided useful guidance to a relative large population of inexperienced risk estimators, many of these early risk assessments were flawed; they provided unrealistically high estimates of failure probabilities and the tools did not help estimators understand or explain each failure mode. To assist the RMC in bringing more defensible risk estimates to the table and improve consistency of the evaluations, the Quality Control and Consistency (QCC) review process was initiated about two years ago. The QCC process provides high level review of IES activities, including detailed reviews of risk analyses, by a small group of experienced dam safety risk estimators. Not only has this brought risk estimates into a more reasonable range, it has provided valuable training for risk estimators, and important checks and balances on the risk-informed decision making process for moving dam safety upgrade projects forward. The justification for a number of very expensive projects has been challenged and, in some cases, re-prioritised, and other projects have risen to the prominence they deserve.
P C Styles, A L Garrard
The Victorian town of Nathalia was surrounded by flood water during the March 2012 floods in Northern Victoria.
Nathalia is protected by earthen levees of various sizes and age. Portable aluminium levees were installed during the March 2012 flood event, generally in areas where a permanent levee would restrict access to a park and views. The flood level came within 200mm of the crest of many of the levees and remained at a high level for nearly 2 weeks.
The paper describes the emergency management issues and procedures which relied on engineering advice to provide targeted and relevant remedial works on the levee system as potential problems arose. Engineers worked alongside the SES, CFA, Victoria Police, ADF and other volunteers to monitor, repair and reinforce the levee system on a 24 hour basis. The engineering support continued over a period of approximately 2 weeks, from the time the flood waters commenced rising until they had receded sufficiently for the orders for evacuation of the town to be rescinded.
Keywords: Nathalia, floods, levees, emergency management
Dr. Mark Locke, Jiri Herza
Gördes Dam is a nickel and cobalt mine tailings dam situated in a seismically active zone in Manisa Province, Western Turkey. The dam is a conventional cross valley earthfill structure with a fully lined storage basin. The starter embankment with a maximum height of 50 m will be raised in downstream lifts to an ultimate height of 90 m. The total storage capacity is 19 million m3. Construction of the starter embankment is planned to commence in late 2012 and the dam will be commissioned in June 2013.
The tailings will be discharged from the dam crest and return water will be collected by a floating decant pump at the opposite site of the storage. Decant water has high calcium sulphate levels and will require treatment before re-use in the plant or release. The tailings contain about 33 % of solids and are classified as high plasticity silts and clays with more than 90 % of particles passing the 0.075 mm sieve.
The dam is founded on a complex formation of altered sedimentary and metamorphic rocks including mudstones, siltstones, limestones and serpentines. The mudstone blocks, the predominant foundation materials, are juxtaposed with siltstones and serpentines via a complex arrangement of faults. Where exposed, the mudstones are highly to completely weathered with a well-developed structure of smooth bedding surfaces leading to anisotropic strength characteristics. Several landslides, likely associated with the anisotropic character of the mudstones, were identified within the area including a significant landslide under the upstream shoulder of the dam.
Mining development in Turkey has a complex legislative environment. There is also standard practice which is not legislated but expected, this can be considerably different to normal design practice in Australia. The Turkish legislation is based on waste management guidelines and may be more appropriate to landfills than large tailings storages. The legislation is very prescriptive in some aspects and silent in others, with little consideration of risk or consequence based design.
This paper discusses the design difficulties associated with the challenging foundation conditions, which have been magnified by the requirements and limitations embedded in the approval documentation and the legislative environment in Turkey. It will also address some of the key differences between the design philosophy in Australia and in Turkey with a focus on the major risk elements of the design.
Keywords: Tailings, Turkey, Liner, HDPE, Nickel laterite
Sofia Vargas, Robert Wark
Logue Brook Dam, 130 km south east of Perth, was completed in 1963 and comprises a 49 m high main embankment with a crest length of approximately 335 m and the reservoir impounds 24.59 GL of storage. The outlet works comprise an inlet tower, an outlet pipe (DN 1100 mm) and a valve house. Water from the dam is released through a clam shell valve and there is a sluice valve upstream of the clam shell which acts as a scour isolation valve.
Previously Logue Brook Dam supplied water into the Harvey irrigation system by releasing water down the river which was then drawn off downstream and pumped into the piped network. The scheme planning had identified that constructing a pipeline from the dam outlet to connect directly into the piped irrigation system would eliminate the need for pumping as the system could then be gravity fed directly from the dam.
The outlet works upgrade comprised the refurbishment of the Inlet Tower, refurbishment of the Valve House, installation of new valves, environmental release and magnetic flow meters, electrical, communications, SCADA, instrumentation and security upgrades.
This paper describes the diving inspection and above water inspections of the inlet tower, refurbishment of the existing installation, challenges of the design, adopted solutions, connection to the Harvey Water pipeline and construction issues. The project represents an interesting case history of improving dam safety standards to current ANCOLD guidelines to provide a modern and safe facility.
Keywords: Outlet works, diving, OH &S Issues, safety, deterioration