JUST ASK SHANE: Inspecting Dams Along Columbia, Snake Rivers - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

JUST ASK SHANE: Inspecting Dams Along Columbia, Snake Rivers

Posted: Updated:
Thursday's Just Ask Shane question has to do with the safety of the dams along the Columbia river. Steve asks, "After the crack was discovered at Wanapum Dam, are the other dams along the Columbia getting inspected for cracks? Who's responsible for those Thursday's Just Ask Shane question has to do with the safety of the dams along the Columbia river. Steve asks, "After the crack was discovered at Wanapum Dam, are the other dams along the Columbia getting inspected for cracks? Who's responsible for those
KENNEWICK, WA - Thursday's Just Ask Shane question has to do with the safety of the dams along the Columbia river.
Steve asks, "After the crack was discovered at Wanapum Dam, are the other dams along the Columbia getting inspected for cracks? Who's responsible for those inspections?"

We talked with Grant County PUD, which operates Wanapum Dam and the Priest Rapids Dam.  They told us that their engineers conduct a long list of inspections throughout the year using submersible cameras, divers, and other instruments to evaluate the facilities. They say none of their inspections uncovered any problems at Wanapum until the crack occurred.
  
We also spoke with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.  They operate the dams downstream on the Columbia river, at McNary, John Day, and The Dalles.  The also operate the dams along the Snake river, including Ice Harbor Dam.  The Corps has an extensive dam safety program in place that includes a schedule of daily, weekly, and monthly inspections by workers at each dam.  And that's just the beginning.
 
"Every year, we have a program manager that goes out for an inspection at the dam, and we also have a multi-discipline team of engineers.  Every five years we do an extensive inspection of each project," said Brian Miller with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Walla Walla District.

Miller adds that the Corps also conducts a risk assessment at each of their dams every ten years, and a seismic safety review every 15 years.

Remember, if you have a question about something that's going on in our community... send it my way.
You can call me in the newsroom at (509) 737-6738, or send me an email at JustAskShane@nbcrightnow.com.
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and KHQ. All Rights Reserved. For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.