Case Study: Steele Creek Dam Safety Analysis, Bristol, Tennessee

by Bernie Auld, Lockwood Greene Engineers, Inc, Nashville, United States,
Bruce A. Tschantz, Lockwood Greene Engineers, Inc, Nashville, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Waterpower '91: A New View of Hydro Resources


Steele Creek Dam creates a small recreational park lake before discharging into Beaver Creek a few hundred yards below the dam. Existing homes and trailers downstream from this junction are within the natural 100-year and calculated dam failure flood inundation areas. The current Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) flood insurance map apparently gives total flood storage credit to the reservoir behind the dam and does not account for any potential hazard from either postulated dam failure or from increased runoff from the watershed above the dam. Hydrologic analysis of the Steele and Beaver Creek watersheds was performed separately for HMR-52 derived fractional Probable Maximum Storms and inflow flood hydrographs were derived for each storm level. Dam failure was assumed when overtopping occurred. A stage-discharge rating curve was developed for Beaver Creek from the combined Beaver Creek and Steele Creek Dam discharges. From this and stage-damage data for the home and trailer areas, a cost analysis study was utilized for developing several options to determine the optimal structural or non-structural alternative to deal with an under-sized spillway.

Subject Headings: Dam failures | Case studies | Rivers and streams | Steel | Dam safety | Floods | Failure analysis | Water discharge | Tennessee | United States

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