Peter Hill and Rory Nathan
The ANCOLD Acceptable Flood Capacity (AFC) guidelines were published in 2000 and provide guidance on the selection of design flood capacities for dams and specifically a deterministic fallback provision for spillway capacities. Since the guideline was published, there has been a continual evolution in dam safety management practices and related guidelines, including the 2003 ANCOLD guidelines on risk assessment and the current revision of Australian Rainfall and Runoff by Engineers Australia. This paper describes the scope of the current AFC guidelines and perceived opportunities for refinement. A survey of users was used to test and identify issues and gauge the need for the guideline to be updated. A number of topics were identified that would benefit from clarification or further guidance. These topics include consistency with other ANCOLD guidelines, clarity on the selection of the AFC, definition of the dam crest flood, freeboard and application to gated structures.
Jamie Campbell, Gregg Barker, Paul Southcott and Michael Wallis
The assessment of consequences of dambreak is used as input to the design parameters of dams, dam safety requirements and dam risk assessments. For many low consequence category dams, the consequences of failure can be dominated by itinerants, in particular vehicles on roads within the dambreak inundation area. Estimating the population at risk (PAR) and potential loss of life (PLL) rigorously is mathematically complex, requires significant user judgment and can be very sensitive to input assumptions. This paper presents a simple, practical tool that has been developed to assist engineers and analysts in assessing the PLL of itinerant road users within a dambreak inundation zone. The tool allows for a logical and defensible analysis based on an event tree approach and provides guidance on appropriate factors to be used in calculating the overall fatality rate of people exposed to the dambreak hazard. This paper details the tool and how to apply it to typical dambreak problems, providing the reader with the information required to estimate the consequences on itinerant road users; the paper also details how the concepts discussed can be applied to other itinerants.
Neil Jacka, Christopher Dann, Jeremy Eldridge
The Tekapo Canal Remediation Works were undertaken to extend the life of the canal and enhance its seismic and environmental resilience. The deterioration of the canal lining in specific reaches has been the consequence of internal erosion of the lining under operating conditions.
The remedial works comprised installation of a supplementary geomembrane liner over selected sections of the canal, reconstruction of a culvert where the embankment had suffered piping, installation of filters in the Maryburn Fill, strengthening of the bridges across the canal and replacement of irrigation off-takes.
This paper presents a summary of key issues resolved during the design of the remediation works, in particularly the design of the geomembrane ballast system, the cofferdams and the management of side slope stability during drawdown for the works. A number of construction trials were carried out to confirm design assumptions and test construction techniques. The trials were a significant factor in the successful completion of the first season of work ahead of programme.
Keywords: Canal, Lining, Geomembrane, Cofferdam, Design, Seismic resilience
Kinchant Dam is a zoned earth and rockfill embankment situated on the north branch of Sandy Creek, approximately 30 km southwest of Mackay in central Queensland. Kinchant Dam was constructed in stages. The ‘Initial Development Stage’ which consisted of an embankment length of approximately 3.3 km and full supply level (FSL) of EL 49.21 m AHD was completed in 1977. Further development completed in 1986 (Stage I) increased the FSL to EL 57.21 m AHD with an embankment length of 5.5 km and a maximum embankment height of 22.3 m. The dam has a storage capacity of 62,800 Ml and a 60 m wide emergency spillway with a fixed crest level of EL 58.21 m AHD, one metre higher than the FSL.
A series of investigations have been carried out since its construction as a consequence of both regulatory safety reviews and observed excessive pore pressures within the foundation that have led to wet patches developing at the toe of the dam. In one area at the toe, pore pressures were such that artesian conditions developed. This paper outlines the history of various stages of construction of the dam, the foundation investigations since construction and the safety review and comprehensive risk assessment process that lead to the upgrade design and construction of remedial works. The remedial works include the extension of the downstream filter material adjacent to the clay core and the provision of additional pressure relief wells at the downstream toe of the dam.
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.
The dam surveillance industry relies on deformation survey data to assist in understanding and monitoring dam performance. My paper presents an overview of New Zealand dam deformation surveying. The fundamentals and best practice of deformation surveying are discussed, along with accuracies achieved and developments in automated measurements in real time. The key to achieving high accuracy in the results is using precise well calibrated survey instruments, many redundant measurements, quality survey marks and rigorous computational routines.