Fairbairn Dam upgrade hits milestone

A project to ensure the long-term viability of one of Queensland’s biggest dams has reached an important milestone.

Thousands of cubic metres of concrete have been successfully installed below the spillway at Fairbairn Dam, near Emerald.

This work closes out the critical concrete overlay component of stage 2 of Sunwater’s Fairbairn Dam Improvement Project.

In addition to placing 9,783 cubic metres of concrete, 1,017 passive anchors have been installed as part of stage 2 works, with 78 active anchors on the spillway crest to also be included.

The project, which commenced in 2016, will bring the dam’s infrastructure into line with current design standards.

Sunwater expects the entire program of work to be finished by the end of the year, ahead of schedule and within budget.

More than 85 per cent of workers on the upgrade are from Central Queensland, while 80 per cent of suppliers have also been sourced from the local region.

In February 2020, it achieved a significant workplace health and safety milestone recording 400,000 hours without a lost-time-injury.

The 1.3 million megalitre dam was built in 1972 and supplies water for urban, industrial and agricultural purposes across the region.

The Fairbairn Dam Improvement Project is a high priority project in Sunwater’s extensive dam improvement program, which aims to maintain public safety during large rainfall events and strengthen water security.