News - JEWELL Engineering Prepares Emergency Action Plans and Inundation Maps for Dam Owners in North Carolina

JEWELL hosts two webcasts in 2014

November 2015 – The Coal Ash Management Act of 2014, signed into law in September 2014, requires all owners of high and intermediate hazard dams to prepare and submit Emergency Action Plans (EAPs) to the NC Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and the NC Department of Public Safety (DPS). The original deadline for submittal has been postponed from March 1, 2015 to December 31, 2015. An Emergency Action Plan is a document that provides a description of potential emergency conditions that could occur at the dam, as well as a description of actions to be taken in response to each of those listed emergency conditions. The document lists the emergency notification procedures to aid in warnings and evacuations during an emergency condition at the dam.

Each EAP must include a downstream inundation map depicting areas that could be affected by a dam failure and sudden release of the impoundment. For most small and medium sized dams, Simplified Inundation Maps (SIMS) can depict the inundation area at a reduced cost in lieu of more time-consuming detailed engineering analysis and expensive stream modeling. To date, JEWELL has completed Inundation Maps and/or EAPs for clients in Alamance, Forsyth, Guilford, Mecklenburg, Orange, Stanly, and Wake counties. These maps include the inundation boundary shown on an aerial map of the area. The affected parcels are highlighted and numbered to correspond to an Affected Properties table that is also included in the EAP. The maps depict roadways and railroads that could be affected in a dam breach condition as well as any structures that fall within the inundation boundary.

These Emergency Action Plans meet State requirements and provide a necessary tool for emergency management agencies if a dam breach occurs. Dam owners will have a plan in place with notification procedures and phone numbers readily available and emergency responders can be made aware of roadways that may become impassable as well as structures that may require evacuation.