Dam Surveillance - Lessons learnt from case histories

ICOLD Bulletin 180 presents the vast experience gained over the past 6 decades by the dam engineering community in the field of dam surveillance by means of 80 case histories. The documented case histories endeavour to cover the practical experiences related with one or several of the following points: a) Methods for the improvement of the quality and reliability of information. b) Data processing and representation techniques. c) Effective Diagnostic analyses to determine behaviour patterns. d) Dedicated surveillance systems for the optimization of maintenance, rehabilitation, and other life cycle costs. e) Impact of surveillance on preventing dam incidents and dam failure. f) Overview of dam surveillance management systems. The case histories cover a wide variety of technical aspects and deal with success stories but also incidents, some of them with catastrophic consequences. The time framework spans over 70 years: from the times of the Second World War up to the present. The purpose is to learn from these practical experiences, not to criticize the involved individuals, who had to work with the techniques and rules of practice available at the time. This bulletin wants to contribute to keep learning from the experience of the dam engineering community, specifically in the field of dam surveillance. Some of the case histories are widely known and have been described and analysed in numerous publications. Most of them are related to famous dam failure incidents and were compiled as international “benchmark case histories” for this bulletin to focus on the specific lessons learnt related with dam surveillance.