Kinchant Dam to undergo $30m safety upgrade

01 Sep 2010

SunWater has commenced investigative work on a $30 million dam safety upgrade that will enable Kinchant Dam to manage flood waters more effectively during extreme rainfall events.

According to SunWater Infrastructure Management General Manager Barry Jeppesen, the multi million dollar project was part of an ongoing dam safety upgrade program that SunWater was carrying out following a comprehensive risk assessment program of all SunWater dams.

The assessments identified some areas where particular dams do not meet required standards with regard to extreme weather events, in line with revised rainfall data by the Bureau of Meteorology.

"While the probability of an extreme rainfall event occurring is very low, it is possible, and as a responsible dam safety owner SunWater was taking action.

“The dam is already safe but this upgrade will enable it to better manage potential excess water in the future”, Mr Jeppesen said.

The upgrade work will extend over the entire 5.5 km length of the embankment and is likely to include extension of the existing drainage system within the dam wall and improvement of the foundation drainage in selected areas along the downstream base of the dam wall embankment.
SunWater Area Operations Manager Tom Wallwork said that geotechnical investigations will commence later this year in order to provide information into the design of the upgrade.

“While SunWater is only carrying out investigative works at this stage, the organisation plans to commence upgrade construction work by mid-2011 and complete the project by mid-2013.

“The dam safety upgrade is not expected to disrupt water supply to SunWater customers and only cause minimal impact on public access to roads, boat ramps, picnic areas and other dam amenities.

“SunWater will provide the community with an opportunity to provide feedback on the project once the designs are closer to completion,” Mr Wallwork said.
SunWater has successfully completed safety upgrades at Fred Haigh Dam near Gin Gin, Bjelke-Petersen Dam near Murgon and Borumba Dam near Imbil and is currently finalising a safety upgrade project at Tinaroo Falls Dam on the Atherton Tablelands.

For more information about the Kinchant Dam safety upgrade click here, or phone SunWater on 13 15 89.

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