Jeong Yeul, Lim
For various historical reasons and some technical reasons, the safety of dams has been evaluated using an engineering standards-based approach, which was developed over many years. It was used initially for the design of new dams, but increasingly has been applied over the past few decades to assess the safety of existing dams. Some countries have carried out risk assessments of existing dams that included both the structural and hydraulic safety of the dam and social risk. These methods developed by other countries could be adapted to assist in decision-making for dam safety management. Unfortunately, methods for risk assessment of dams were not established in Korea. This study outlines a beginning risk analysis for structural safety management. The first stage consisted of research on the present domestic dam safety guidelines and reviewing operations for management systems of dam safety abroad. Also, dam risk analysis requires reliable data on dam failure, past construction history and management records of existing dams. A suitable risk analysis method of dams for structural safety management in Korea is use of event tree, fault tree and conditioning indexes methods. A pilot risk assessment was carried out for two dams. The dam risk assessment process was thus established, and we learned the importance of risk assessment. The future includes additional research and risk analysis to develop the system.
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Monique de Moel and Gamini Adikari
Parks Victoria manages over 4 million hectares of parkland and a portfolio of over $1.9 billion worth of infrastructure assets. Within this portfolio, Parks Victoria is responsible for a large number of dams and their associated structures. Consequence category of these dams varies from Extreme to Very Low. Parks Victoria recognised that these assets required a dam safety management and monitoring program. The development of a program commenced with a portfolio risk assessment in 1998 which progressed to detailed design reviews of a selected number of dams and the initiation of an ongoing dam safety and surveillance program. This initial work identified the need for dam safety upgrade works within this asset portfolio which Parks Victoria has been progressively addressing. In 2012 Parks Victoria identified that a review of the risk profile of the dams was warranted. The review included consideration of alternative options such as staging of works, reducing storage volume and decommissioning, as well as non-technical considerations such as increasing the recreational use and the environmental value of these assets. This paper outlines the approach adopted by Parks Victoria in developing and improving its dam safety program and how it has assisted in minimising dam safety risks. Specifically, Parks Victoria’s approach of adopting measures that recognize the purpose and benefits of the individual storages, whilst being sympathetic to the requirements of the other infrastructure within its diverse portfolio of assets is highlighted. Since this work commenced in 1998, Parks Victoria have been successful in the development of an effective dam safety and management program which has resulted in the reduction of risks associated with this portfolio of assets.
M.G. Webby and N.D. Sutherland
Repairs to the floor slab of the outlet transition section of the Pukaki Canal Inlet Structure in November 2009 were likely to have adversely affected the hydraulic jump behaviour in the transition section of the structure and therefore necessitated revision of the safe operating limits for the structure. Three separate series of flow trials were carried out at different lake levels over a period of about a year to carefully observe the behaviour of the hydraulic jump under a variety of gate operating configurations and discharges. New safe limits of operation for the structure were defined for the structure using the flow observations from the flow trials and the framework of analytical models for different types of hydraulic jump. The revised limits of safe operation were successfully implemented in 2013.
John Duder, David Bouma and Paul McCallum
The authors have been involved in the safety inspection and remediation of many older (pre-dating the 2004 Building Act) farm dams over the past decade coupled with considerable corporate knowledge from dams inspected by Tonkin & Taylor Ltd in its 50+ year history. This paper presents a summary of the varied benefits and risks of these older dams and the difficulties encountered in bringing them into alignment with current practice.
The many farm dams around New Zealand provide considerable benefit to the owners and often to the environment and wider community including the obvious stock water and irrigation, but also micro hydro, recreation, flood detention, release of environmental flows and flows for downstream users, and wetland habitat.
However, when applying current dam safety practice, and looking forward to the implementation of the Dam Safety Regulations, some of the older farm dams have significant dam safety issues that are often challenging to address. Although there is a high degree of variability, typical issues include:
Little or no documentation of geotechnical investigations, design or construction,
Design standards, particularly for spillway capacity have generally increased,
Little or no formal surveillance or maintenance carried out or recorded since commissioning,
Many farm dam owners have a poor understanding of their obligations under the Building Act and the Conditions of their Resource consents,
Consent conditions may not require dam safety related monitoring and maintenance, and/or the conditions may not have been historically enforced.
Many of these farm dams have been constructed by small contractors at the request of the farmers, often with only “standardised” engineering design and little specific geotechnical investigation. Typically there are no as-built records and the dam owners have been left with a general lack of understanding of owner’s responsibilities to monitor and maintain the dam.
Given that there are often very limited funds available for upgrade work, it has proved important to apply sound engineering judgement and a high degree of pragmatism to realise the greatest possible reduction in dam safety related risk for the available funds. Good cooperation between the Regional Authority, the Building Consent Authority for dams (often they are different organisations), the dam owner, and the dam engineer, together with a pragmatic approach is vital in moving toward current best practice for management of these dams.
Case studies are presented for the Northland Region, where the farm dams are typically homogenous earth fill dams in the order of 8 to 12 m high, fulfilling functions as irrigation, stock water supply, recreation and flood detention structures. The findings are considered relevant to earth fill farm dams across the country.
Matthew Sentry and Darren Loidl
To triple Yass’ water storage capacity, Yass Valley Council was required to increase the height of their existing concrete weir by 3.0 m. The 100 m wide weir was originally constructed back in the 1920’s. Upgrade works to the weir included raising the height of the existing concrete weir by 3.0 m with reinforced concrete; install 33 number 27 strand post-tensioned ground anchors vertically into the crest; construct a new outlet structure; upgrade existing mechanical pipe works; and replace the existing pedestrian bridge with a concrete bridge capable of vehicle traffic.
The key project constraints during construction were to maintain constant water to the town’s water treatment plant and maintain minimum 70% reservoir storage.
The original weir had no auxiliary means of flow diversion and the construction constraints meant that the water storage could only be reduced by 1.0 m from the existing crest during construction, resulting in the construction work being carried out in an active water course with minimal means of flow diversion. These key project constraints meant that there was a high risk of flooding during construction work.
Geotechnical Engineering was engaged by Yass Valley Council to carry out the required upgrade work at Yass Dam. Prior to construction work commencing, risk workshops with client and designers clarified the flood risks during construction. To minimise the impact of flood events during construction, Geotech implemented several flood mitigation measures which were controlled by a detailed construction flood management plan. These control measures included construction of two temporary diversion slots cut into the existing concrete weir capable of supporting a 1 in 2 year rain event whilst allowing construction work to continue; re-design of concrete works to minimise the volume of concrete which was to be cut from the existing wall’s downstream face; detailed construction sequencing to minimise impact to existing and new wall during construction work; and the early installation and stressing of anchors.
Although a detailed construction flood management plan was developed and implemented, the Yass Dam site was impacted by 13 floods during the 20 month construction period. Several floods recorded water levels between 1.5 m and 1.9 m above the existing crest, resulting in work ceasing for weeks if not months at a time. As a result of the consistent flooding, Geotech was able to develop stronger and more resilient methods to be able to effectively work within an active watercourse on dam structures where minimal flow diversions are available. This paper presents the unique techniques implemented through the Yass Dam Upgrade project and discusses the effectiveness of these techniques and lessons learnt through the 13 flood events experienced.
B. Perrin and J. Vida
The Cotter Dam project represents the most significant infrastructure project in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT) since Parliament House in 1988. Enlarging the Cotter Dam has increased the Cotter reservoir capacity from 3 GL to 78 GL, representing a 35% increase of ACTEW Corporation’s total reservoir capacity for the ACT region and providing water security to facilitate future population growth.
At 87 m high, Cotter Dam is the tallest Roller Compacted Concrete (RCC) dam in Australia. Construction began in October 2009, with excavation of the dam foundation commencing in March 2010. With typically 05H:1V slopes up to 115 m high, excavation posed a number of challenges. RCC placement commenced in August 2011 and continued until December 2012.
Innovation and continuous improvement were crucial to the success of the project. From development of specialised mechanical tools for the abutment excavation, to use of precast, to mechanical paving of the downstream RCC steps, construction practice on Cotter Dam established a number of new benchmarks for RCC dam construction.
This paper will describe the construction innovations used to overcome the challenges associated with construction during foundation preparation and RCC placement for the Cotter Dam Project.