2009 – Construction of the Plastic Concrete Cut-off Wall at Hinze Dam

Steve O’Brien, Christopher Dann, Gavan Hunter, Mike Schwermer

One of the principal geotechnical issues identified for the Hinze Dam Stage 3 project was the potential for internal erosion and piping within the extremely complex geology at the right abutment. A plastic concrete cut-off wall was selected as the best solution to reduce the risk of piping to acceptable levels and careful planning of this work was required to manage a range of key project risks that included complex technical challenges, potential risks to dam safety, the environment, the surrounding community as well as delivering the works on a tight construction schedule to an agreed budget value. Construction of the 220m long and up to 53m deep cut-off wall, the largest wall of this type constructed to date within Australia, was undertaken by Bauer Foundations Australia and completed in January 2009. A major key to the success of the project was the planning and risk reduction measures that were undertaken during both the design and construction phases, a summary of which is presented in this paper.

Keywords: Cutoff Wall, Plastic Concrete, Hinze Dam.

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