The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has awarded Treviicos South the initial phase of a contract to stabilise the sands beneath Tuttle Creek dam against earthquakes.

The US$50M award to the Florida-based company will allow work on the dam to begin this fall. The Tuttle Creek Dam Safety project is expected to be the largest ground modification project on an operational dam anywhere in the world and is the largest dam safety modification ever undertaken by the USACE.

The first phase of the five phase contract will involve constructing a berm on the upstream side of the dam to give crews a flat area to work. The sand below the dam will then be treated by injecting a cement and water mix at high pressures to form a wall and columns to support the dam.

A dam failure warning system consisting of high tech monitoring equipment and sirens was recently put into operation in the valley downstream of the dam to assist the 13,000 residents with evacuation should a major earthquake occur before construction on the dam is completed. An earthquake between magnitude 5.7 and 6.6 could significantly damage the dam.

Other on-going work at the project includes building office facilities for the construction staff and the development of two new campgrounds to offset potential impacts to campgrounds below the dam.

A contract for reinforcing and repainting of the 18 spillway Tainter gates is scheduled for award by the end of September 2005 and a concrete barrier along the top of the dam to protect against waves during high water is planned for future construction. The work on the project is expected to be completed by 2012 at a total cost of over US$200M.

For more information about the Tuttle Creek Dam Safety project, click on the weblink below.

External weblinks

US Army Corps of Engineers