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Tony L. Wahl. 2001. "The Uncertainty of Embankment Dam Breach Parameter Predictions Based on Dam Failure Studies". Bureau of Reclamation, Report Number PAP-876.

Abstract: Risk assessment studies considering the failure of embankment dams often make use of breach parameter prediction methods that have been developed from analysis of historic dam failures. Similarly, predictions of peak breach outflow can also be made using relations developed from case study data. This paper presents an analysis of the uncertainty of many of these breach parameter and peak flow prediction methods, making use of a previously compiled database (Wahl 1998) of 108 dam failures. Subsets of this database were used to develop many of the relations examined. The paper begins with a brief discussion of breach parameters and prediction methods. The uncertainty analysis of the various methods is next presented, and finally, a case study is offered to illustrate the application of several breach parameter prediction methods and the uncertainty analysis to a risk assessment recently performed by the Bureau of Reclamation for Jamestown Dam, on the James River in east-central North Dakota.

Web Link: http://www.usbr.gov/pmts/hydraulics_lab/pubs/PAP/PAP-0876.pdf

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