Does this picture of 'neglected' Whaley Bridge dam prove it was a disaster waiting to happen?

Mail Online | 8/3/2019 | Nick Craven for The Mail on Sunday
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Footage showing plants growing between the concrete panels of the Toddbrook Reservoir dam spillway three years ago have raised questions over its maintenance since then.

The spillway is designed to deal with any water which comes over the top of the dam and channel it safely away.

Engineering - Expert - Concern - Harm - Structure

One engineering expert voiced concern over possible harm to the structure.

Dr Mohammad Heidarzadeh, an assistant professor at Brunel University, said the vegetation on the 2016 video taken from a drone indicated likely gaps between the panels where water could have swept in, making the damage worse.

Problem - Right

'That could be the whole problem right there,' he said.

'The spillway needs to be kept sealed and clear of these kind of weeds and plants.'

Expert - Professor - Tim - Broyd - President

However another expert, Professor Tim Broyd, former president of the Institution of Civil Engineers, doubted whether the spillway's failure matched the area where the weeds were most prevalent.

Asked whether the images suggested good maintenance, he said: 'I'm not sure why you'd want a small tree on the spillway.'

Spokesperson - Canal - River - Trust - CRT

A spokesperson for the Canal and River Trust (CRT), which maintains the dam, said the reservoir was inspected and maintained by independent engineers.

'This includes regular detailed ten yearly inspections carried out by an independent panel engineer and CRT supervising engineer.

November - Panel - Engineer - CRT - Engineer

'The last one was undertaken in November 2018 and signed off by the independent panel engineer and CRT supervising engineer in April.

'Understanding historical inspections and maintenance is clearly important and will be part of our ongoing response to this event.'

Residents - Whaley - Bridge - Case - Dam

The residents of Whaley Bridge have been evacuated in case the dam bursts.

Emergency service vehicles will sound their horns...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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