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Whaley Bridge Spillway Failure. 6000 folk evacuated.

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RhynoCZ
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PostPosted: 08:09 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

doggone wrote:
All the joints packed with weeds and even small trees growing, no wonder water got in - lack of maintenance.
Blame global warming for making rain rainier.


I wonder if they'll prosecute the people who were responsible for checking the dam and were negligent for all those years. I mean, you pay an expert to give his expert opinion and regular checks of the structure and then this happens. It's also not like this is the very first time something like this happened.
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doggone
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PostPosted: 10:15 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

An official excuse will already be put together, which makes it sound like they put the utmost priority on safety and correct maintenance but cite unspecified operational difficulties of some kind.

There will be much emphasis on *unprecedented* rain event and climate change.
It was an unexceptional period of thundery showers such as might be expected at least once a decade in a hilly area like that.
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Freddyfruitba...
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PostPosted: 11:45 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

doggone wrote:
There will be much emphasis on *unprecedented* rain event and climate change.
It was an unexceptional period of thundery showers such as might be expected at least once a decade in a hilly area like that.

In the absence of an actual hurricane, I don't really understand what the bad weather has to do with it. I mean - a dam is just a big wall which holds back a load of water to form a reservoir. If it rains, the reservoir fills up, after which it will just overflow down the spillway. It's not like a sea wall defence, which is subject to stormy seas smashing repeatedly against it, is it? I can't see why anything other than lack of routine maintenance would be the cause of the obvious damage to the dam's spillway.
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Riejufixing
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PostPosted: 12:55 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

Freddyfruitbat wrote:
In the absence of an actual hurricane, I don't really understand what the bad weather has to do with it. I mean - a dam is just a big wall which holds back a load of water to form a reservoir. If it rains, the reservoir fills up, after which it will just overflow down the spillway. It's not like a sea wall defence, which is subject to stormy seas smashing repeatedly against it, is it?


No, it isn't, but there are a number of possible problems. Negative pressure along the spillway crest can give rise to lifting forces. Cavitation can erode the concrete face of the spillway. Both are possible in this case (to say nothing of possible alignment issues due to ground conditions). Once there's any penetration of the spillway face (or the bulk of the shell from any source), things can go bad quite quickly, as seen in various footage where discoloration of the water due to entrained material from the shell of the dam (underneath the spillway) is quite plain.

This shows some interesting video of the general conditions, and at 5:04 the crest of the spillway which perhaps may at some time be called a design issue (in view of increasing flows):

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xzXJpK_QcFo

This picture shows the damage quite well:

https://i2-prod.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/incoming/article16685331.ece/ALTERNATES/s1200b/0_JS189186259.jpg

The bad weather increased the flow over the crest of the dam to unforseen levels, which seems to have been the issue.
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MCN
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PostPosted: 13:50 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

RhynoCZ wrote:
doggone wrote:
All the joints packed with weeds and even small trees growing, no wonder water got in - lack of maintenance.
Blame global warming for making rain rainier.


I wonder if they'll prosecute the people who were responsible for checking the dam and were negligent for all those years. I mean, you pay an expert to give his expert opinion and regular checks of the structure and then this happens. It's also not like this is the very first time something like this happened.


The government are not responsible for canals in UK as they are not a part of the transport network.

Funding for everything is a concern.
Inspections and maintenance is compromised by lack of funding.

And who knows the full details of the last inspection report?
There may well have been recommendations or advisory remarks.

And possibly funding was being sought.

But because of Brexit..
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doggone
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PostPosted: 14:13 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

Riejufixing wrote:

When he looks down from the walkway you can clearly see a large willow or birch flailing in the water at the damaged area. Further across an ash sapling looks to be 4 or 5 years old.
All the disturbances in the flow are caused by excessive vegetation at the joints.
It's a poor design how it funnels the flow on one side with risk of erosion where it overtops the channel at the bottom, however the failed area seems to be higher up where that effect was less.
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Riejufixing
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PostPosted: 14:25 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

doggone wrote:
Riejufixing wrote:

When he looks down from the walkway you can clearly see a large willow or birch flailing in the water at the damaged area. Further across an ash sapling looks to be 4 or 5 years old.
All the disturbances in the flow are caused by excessive vegetation at the joints.

The excessive rainfall is likely to be the cause. It's possible that vegetation actually helped avoid damage! However, I doubt it was very significant either way.

goggone wrote:
It's a poor design how it funnels the flow on one side with risk of erosion where it overtops the channel at the bottom, however the failed area seems to be higher up where that effect was less.

I was thinking about the design of the spillway crest, actually.
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MCN
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PostPosted: 17:22 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

The roots creep into microscopic cracks possibly due to frost weathering, as the vegetation grows the roots go deeper and grow thicker.
The continuous pressure of the roots pushing the grout and added leverage on the root from wind will help to loosen more grout and more roots can take hold.

Tree roots split earthen pipe buried underground.

The last inspection should have highlighted this growth.for removal.
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MCN
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PostPosted: 20:22 - 10 Aug 2019    Post subject: Reply with quote

https://youtu.be/k53Q147Y3x0

Dam dams.
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