2005 – Dam Safety Emergency Exercise for Eildon Dam, Goulburn Weir and Waranga Basin

Andrew Evans, Michael Cawood, Jonathon Reid

Eildon Dam, Goulburn Weir and Waranga Basin in Victoria are owned and managed by Goulburn-Murray Water (G-MW). Eildon Dam and Goulburn Weir are situated on the Goulburn River, while Waranga Basin is an offstream storage supplied from Goulburn Weir.

In November 2004 a dam safety emergency exercise involving the establishment of a central Emergency Coordination Centre at Tatura as well as Emergency Operations Centres at each of these three dam sites was conducted. The exercise presented a variety of emergency situations in stepped time increments, including earthquake, mechanical failure, a hazardous material spill and a terrorism related incident. External agencies were not involved.

The exercise was part of an ongoing G-MW program designed to test and improve dam safety emergency planning and response systems for all of G-MW’s dams and highlighted areas where procedures, situational management and communications can be enhanced.

Outcomes aimed for in G-MW’s program are improvement in Dam Safety Emergency Plans and internal communications, together with clarification of roles, responsibilities and capabilities.
The valuable experiences learned from this dam safety emergency exercise and plans for a larger scale exercise involving other emergency management agencies will be shared with others through this paper.

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