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(Yahoo)   Washington hydroelectric sea wall has a 65-foot crack. Damn   ( news.yahoo.com) divider line
    More: Fail, Years a Slave, Iditarod, Crimean, Spirit Awards, southwestern China, storm water, Columbia River  
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3262 clicks; posted to Business » on 02 Mar 2014 at 2:45 AM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



40 Comments     (+0 »)
 
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2014-03-02 01:04:30 AM  
"Send me in, sir. I can handle this."


myconfinedspace.comView Full Size


"Sir, I'm afraid it's wider than expected. I'm going to have to go in for a closer look."
 
2014-03-02 01:06:58 AM  
Fire up Hanford, guys. Hydro may be easy to pretend is safe, but everything has its risks and dangers.
 
2014-03-02 02:56:51 AM  
Don't worry, the free market will fix it.
 
2014-03-02 03:21:00 AM  
send some ncr rangers up there stat
 
2014-03-02 03:24:25 AM  
What a bunch of wanapum.
 
2014-03-02 03:48:44 AM  
Fail to see how this deserves a fail tag.Engineer noticed an issue and implemented appropriate procedures before the problem became catastrophic. Issue may reapply for fail tag after it is ignored for budgetary /political reasons and the dam actually fails.
 
2014-03-02 04:01:04 AM  
Better to find this before the damn fails versus after.
 
2014-03-02 04:09:16 AM  

NorthernMT: Fail to see how this deserves a fail tag.Engineer noticed an issue and implemented appropriate procedures before the problem became catastrophic. Issue may reapply for fail tag after it is ignored for budgetary /political reasons and the dam actually fails.


Well, the crack is failing at creating an epic movie moment.

Subby is failing at failure.

You're failing to lighten up, Francis.

Plenty of fail to go around.
 
2014-03-02 04:22:36 AM  
The failure of the dam would primarily affect the town of Vantage, which is six miles upstream.

Hmm...
 
2014-03-02 04:54:13 AM  

Warchild: The failure of the dam would primarily affect the town of Vantage, which is six miles upstream.

Hmm...


Mermaids?
 
2014-03-02 05:21:17 AM  

doglover: Mermaids?


Do they have fish ladders for mermaids? Because I'd be snagging them bishes with a treble hook and tossing them into my love slave Jacuzzi.
 
2014-03-02 05:49:03 AM  

ongbok: Don't worry, the free market will fix it.



The Memorial Day holiday is just around the corner.  That reservoir needs to be filled to capacity, crack or no crack.

Have you any idea the amount of dollars at stake?
 
2014-03-02 06:14:09 AM  

Warchild: The failure of the dam would primarily affect the town of Vantage, which is six miles upstream.

Hmm...


Is this dam built on the Nile or something?
 
2014-03-02 09:04:38 AM  
oi57.tinypic.comView Full Size
 
2014-03-02 09:31:11 AM  

gingerjet: Better to find this before the damn fails versus after.


To be fair, it's a lot easier to discover you have a problem after a catastrophic failure.
 
2014-03-02 10:07:06 AM  

NorthernMT: Fail to see how this deserves a fail tag.Engineer noticed an issue and implemented appropriate procedures before the problem became catastrophic. Issue may reapply for fail tag after it is ignored for budgetary /political reasons and the dam actually fails.


Not the subby, but I thought the opposite... that a fail tag is deserved because they didn't notice the issue until the dam was on the verge of collapse.  A 65 foot crack and subsequent warping of the structure of the dam itself doesn't just happen overnight.  That's like saying that ignoring the "check engine" light on your car until the engine starts smoking, and then taking "appropriate action" at that point is good maintenance.
 
2014-03-02 10:11:02 AM  

AngryDragon: Warchild: The failure of the dam would primarily affect the town of Vantage, which is six miles upstream.

Hmm...

Is this dam built on the Nile or something?


Maybe their lights will go out?
 
2014-03-02 10:14:21 AM  
I remember this area before the dam. The town of Vantage got moved when the dam got built. You can still see the old road to town going into the river.
 
2014-03-02 10:20:59 AM  
FYI, a better article:

http://www.wenatcheeworld.com/news/2014/feb/28/potential-failure-sit ua tion-developing-at-wanapum-dam/

Crack is in one of the support pillars, and is 75 feet under water.  It goes across the whole pillar and has widened to 2 inches.  Must have developed over years.  I presume the concern is that whatever stress caused the fracture and then extended it across the pillar & widened it will continue to push against the pillar until it eventually snaps, causing that section of the dam to fail.  Could happen decades from now, could happen tomorrow... they say the latter is unlikely but they are preparing for it just in case.
 
2014-03-02 10:24:17 AM  
upload.wikimedia.orgView Full Size
 
2014-03-02 10:35:50 AM  
 
2014-03-02 10:38:46 AM  
Is an armored truck robbery underway?
 
2014-03-02 11:26:15 AM  
The timing could have been better, given the "Hydrologic Outlook"  from the National Weather Service.  Lots of snow followed by warm weather and lots of rain?  That water needs to go somewhere, and they won't be able to slow it down at Wanapum.
 
2014-03-02 12:44:00 PM  
Uhh, excuse me.  Is this a God dam?
 
2014-03-02 12:50:37 PM  
 
2014-03-02 01:32:34 PM  

SomeAmerican: FYI, a better article:

http://www.wenatcheeworld.com/news/2014/feb/28/potential-failure-sit ua tion-developing-at-wanapum-dam/

Crack is in one of the support pillars, and is 75 feet under water.  It goes across the whole pillar and has widened to 2 inches.  Must have developed over years.  I presume the concern is that whatever stress caused the fracture and then extended it across the pillar & widened it will continue to push against the pillar until it eventually snaps, causing that section of the dam to fail.  Could happen decades from now, could happen tomorrow... they say the latter is unlikely but they are preparing for it just in case.



There's gotta be a structural engineer reading Fark somewhere, so I have questions. From the link -- "The crack runs horizontally along the down-river face of the spillgate pier, Stredwick said. It's about 75 feet below the water's surface. It runs the entire width of the 65-foot-wide pier, which is 126 feet tall and 92 feet from front to back."

First of all, is the spillgate this thing?

iihr.uiowa.eduView Full Size


Are horizontal cracks what we'd expect to see in a spillgate pier, given the loads? What can we infer about the cause of the crack -- a pier unsupported at the base due to scouring or something, or do they dig down to bedrock to support those? A previously undiscovered flaw in the structure?
 
2014-03-02 02:45:11 PM  

Warchild: doglover: Mermaids?

Do they have fish ladders for mermaids? Because I'd be snagging them bishes with a treble hook and tossing them into my love slave Jacuzzi.


Mermaid rape, how does that work?
 
2014-03-02 02:48:56 PM  
First they legalize pot and now they have a crack problem.
 
2014-03-02 03:34:57 PM  
store.aihalaska.comView Full Size
 
2014-03-02 05:28:14 PM  

phaseolus: Are horizontal cracks what we'd expect to see in a spillgate pier, given the loads?


Given the structure, what you expect is no cracks at all.

Cracks mean water is getting into the structure of the dam. If water is getting into the concrete structure, it is rusting the rebar inside it. this causes the concrete to fracture further, allowing more water penetration, and more rust, and so on, until you have water leaking under the dam (scouring) or through it.

No matter how you slice it, the ultimate failure mode to any crack in a dam face is a catastrophic failure.

Fun fact. we have terrible safety regarding Dams in America. obstructed, spillways, inoperative sluice gates, scouring, leaks, cracks.  It's only a matter of time before some old forgotten agricultural or industrial dam fails and floods away a town.
 
2014-03-02 05:37:50 PM  
To expand further.

A spillway is like the emergency drain on your tub. If there is too much water in the Dam, the spillway safely routes the excess water past the dam, to prevent the dam from being overtopped (Overtopping kills the dam)

These spillways are sitting on the back side of the dam. The side you can see. If there is really heavy rains, sometimes water can scour concrete away from the base of the spillway. It's an easy repair and not that dangerous or common.

The crack the found was on the other side of the dam. The side facing all the water. This crack is so severe, it lifted THE ENTIRE DAM ABOVE IT up several inches.  That is not an insignificant amount of mass to move, nor an insignificant difference.

Cracks should not form there at all. Dams are also supposed to be frequently inspected for such cracks, so they can be repaired before they become 65 foot long monstrosities.

These inspections are not being done all over the country, because we've spent all our money being at war for the last decade, and giving our savings to robber barons.
 
2014-03-02 05:43:49 PM  
fluffy2097:


1. Thanks for the replies, it's the sort of info I was hoping would show up

2. Holy farking shiat...
 
2014-03-02 06:51:28 PM  

phaseolus: 2. Holy farking shiat...


Yeah, that's what I'd say if I was an engineer working on a dam and noticed it changing shape over a period of months/weeks/days.

I'd bet a Dogecoin that a lot of maintenance at this place was filed under the category of "deferred"
 
2014-03-02 07:00:45 PM  

SomeAmerican: they say the latter is unlikely but they are preparing for it just in case.


So incredibly unlikely that local residents should stay glued to their TV's and Radios for evacuation warnings.

Your article also mentions that if they had to stop generating power, they would have to buy power from other sources.  They're dropping the water level by 20 feet to reduce pressures, but can still generate power.

The all mighty dollar at work.
 
2014-03-02 07:06:17 PM  
We can't be screwing around and wasting our money on worthless shiat like infrastructure! I just got a call from a very large contributor to my campaign, and his company only posted a $10 billion profit last year, and he is in desperate need of subsidies and tax breaks. That money has to come from somewhere. As much as we would like to be able to fund everything, our resources are limited and must be allocated where are needed the most. Improving our infrastructure is just going to have to wait until our suffering Job Creators are back on their feet. If a dam breaks or a bridge collapses in the meantime and a few whining moochers get wet, then so be it. They'll get over it.
 
2014-03-02 07:18:42 PM  

fluffy2097: SomeAmerican: they say the latter is unlikely but they are preparing for it just in case.

So incredibly unlikely that local residents should stay glued to their TV's and Radios for evacuation warnings.

Your article also mentions that if they had to stop generating power, they would have to buy power from other sources.  They're dropping the water level by 20 feet to reduce pressures, but can still generate power.

The all mighty dollar at work.


You do realize that generating electricity at a hydroelectric plant also releases water, right? May as well keep those turbines spinning as long as the water levels allow.
 
2014-03-02 08:18:39 PM  

AverageAmericanGuy: Fire up Hanford, guys. Hydro may be easy to pretend is safe, but everything has its risks and dangers.


Curiously, this dam is immediately upstream of Hanford, and the region's only operating nuclear power station. If the dam were to catastrophically fail, very, very bad things would happen at the Columbia Generating Station. Likely flooding the plant, then bring it's cooling supply water to a trickle.

And we all know how 1960's nuclear plants handle being flooded and having their cooling systems cut off.
 
2014-03-02 09:06:57 PM  
This is some scary shiat I'm reading from you dam experts.
 
2014-03-02 09:14:01 PM  

John Buck 41: This is some scary shiat I'm reading from you dam experts.


Yeah, sounds like a big dam problem. If that dam crack can't be fixed we could be looking at a big dam disaster.
 
2014-03-02 09:37:20 PM  

akula: John Buck 41: This is some scary shiat I'm reading from you dam experts.

Yeah, sounds like a big dam problem. If that dam crack can't be fixed we could be looking at a big dam disaster.

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