Reducing life safety risks at a remote northern Canadian First Nation Community

Author(s) C.R. Donnelly, J. Shaw, T. Lavender, K. Jamieson, Chief L. Friday
Hydropower & Dams Issue Four, 2018


Modern risk assessment techniques were used to demonstrate that a ring dyke constructed in Canada’s Far North in 1995 posed unacceptable risks to a First Nation Community of more than 2000 people. The appraisals included an assessment of life safety risks in comparison with the CDA’s guidelines for risk tolerability and the feasibility of reducing those risks to tolerable levels. The results, in part, led to the historic signing of an ‘Agreement of Hope’ between the Kashechewan First Nations people and the Governments of Ontario and Canada. This agreement is designed to bring about positive change, eliminating the risks and hardships the community has endured for more than 60 years. It is an example of the value of the risk informed decision-making process in defining and prioritizing means to improve safety.