SunWater to commence water release at Paradise Dam

18 Mar 2013

SunWater advises that water releases to lower the water level in Paradise Dam are planned to commence this evening (Monday 18 March 2013).

On Friday SunWater advised that it was preparing the dam to open the environmental flow gates in order to lower the dam’s level to safely undertake repairs to the downstream dissipator at the dam.

SunWater Chief Executive Officer, Peter Boettcher, said that the record Australia Day weekend floods in the Burnett River caused damage to the Paradise Dam spillway dissipator which is the concrete slab downstream of the dam.

“Following the record floods in January and subsequent rainfall over recent weeks we identified that damage had occurred to the Paradise Dam spillway dissipator,” Mr Boettcher said.

“The safety of our customers, staff and the community is our absolute first priority and we are undertaking repairs as a precaution should any other flood event occur.

“Our initial preparations have involved constructing a temporary access road so that staff can access the site with heavy machinery, along with clearing debris from the area.

Mr Boettcher said that SunWater was now in a position to open the environmental flow gates to assist with stopping the dam from overflowing and lowering the water level in the dam to enable safe access for the preliminary repairs to be carried out. 

“The maximum capacity of water released through the environmental flow gates is 23,000 ML per day and these releases are planned to this evening.”

“We expect these releases will continue for 5 days until the water level in the dam is reduced to 1 metre below the spillway crest,” Mr Boettcher said.

“Some minor flooding is expected to occur downstream of the dam; however SunWater has well established communication protocols and we have been in close contact with our customers and residents living downstream of the dam, as well as the council, police, emergency services, the local disaster management group and the dam safety regulator about these water releases.”

SunWater will provide regular updates to these parties as more information becomes available.

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