The dam at Bainbridge Lake is one of two city-owned dams to undergo review. (MIKE YOUDS/ Special to the AV News)

The dam at Bainbridge Lake is one of two city-owned dams to undergo review. (MIKE YOUDS/ Special to the AV News)

Two city-owned dams in Port Alberni will undergo safety reviews

Both have high failure-consequence ratings, according to city staff

BY MIKE YOUDS

Special to the AV News

Two city-owned dams with high failure-consequence ratings will undergo routine safety reviews.

Port Alberni City Council awarded a contract amounting to $85,000 after staff advised early approval of an $85,000 contract to complete the review as required every 10 years.

The dams are located at Lizard Lake and Bainbridge Lake, city reservoirs. They were last inspected in 2012, said Clinton Wright, city director of operations.

Both dams warranted a high failure-consequence rating in a staff report on the review, prompting Councillor Ron Paulson to ask for additional background.

“I really don’t want to be caught off guard here in the near future or five years, 10 years out,” Paulson said. “There’s obviously got to be some replacement here someday.”

Wright said the rating refers to potential risk. If the dams were to fail, the release of water could cause damage downstream.

“With the staff we have in place now, we can start getting ahead of a lot of these things and make sure they are completed on time,” Wright said.

The contract was awarded to Tetra Tech Canada (formerly EBA Engineering), the same firm that did the last review.

“By going with a firm that is familiar with the system, that is probably our best option,” Wright said.

Bainbridge Lake’s earthen dam and Lizard Lake’s concrete and earthen dam are among 1,800 dams in the province regulated by the Water Sustainability Act.

Municipal GovernmentPort Alberni