Developing Dam-Break Flood Zone Ordinance

by George F. McMahon, (A.M.ASCE), Hydr. Engr.; U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Savannah Dist., Savannah, Ga.,

Serial Information: Journal of the Water Resources Planning and Management Division, 1981, Vol. 107, Issue 2, Pg. 461-476

Document Type: Journal Paper


An interagency task force has been assembled to work with Gwinnett County, Georgia, on a dam-break flood zone ordinance and to develop a model ordinance for Georgia counties and municipalities. The purpose of the model ordinance is to control development downstream of low-hazard dams so that these dams remain in a low-hazard category. Guidelines developed to assist state agencies in determining dam-break flood zones are presented. The guidelines assemble a great deal of data and theoretical developments applicable to simulating dam-break floods. The level of effort required in delineating dam-break flood zones in Gwinnet County is discussed, and the model ordinance is presented in its entirety.

Subject Headings: Hydraulic models | Dam failures | Floods | Developing countries | Hydrologic models | Dams | Local government | Rivers and streams | Georgia | United States

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