Hatch wins provincial award for project protecting Kashechewan First Nation from life-threatening floods
Toronto, Canada—Hatch has received an Award of Merit from the Consulting Engineers of Ontario for work done to protect the remote Kashechewan First Nation community from flood risks that pose a significant threat to human life and community infrastructure. Hatch is proud to share the award with FHR Inc., an Indigenous-owned engineering firm based at Beausoleil First Nation, Ontario that undertook the project management for the project.
The Kashechewan First Nation is located on the Lower Albany River Delta in Northern Ontario, Canada and is home to over 2,000 persons. Each spring the community faces the uncertain prospect of evacuation due to ice-jam flooding. To reduce the impacts of flooding, a five-kilometer-long ring dyke was constructed to surround and protect the community. While this dyke reduced the frequency of flooding, it created another problem: rising river water against the dyke each spring posed significant dam safety risks. There are also concerns about the integrity of the dyke with respect to slope stability and the potential for piping failure when water levels rise against the structure.
Hatch developed two innovative tools to minimize life-threatening dam safety risks. The first is a novel quantitative dam safety risk screening tool that was designed to give a scientifically defendable assessment of the likelihood of dam failure. The second is a unique flood forecast system developed specifically for the complex hydraulic and river ice conditions that exist along the Albany River that, in combination with traditional knowledge, offers a ten-day forecast of the potential for ice jam flooding and the subsequent risk to human lives and infrastructure.
The quantification of the dam safety risks that the community is exposed to led, in part, to a landmark framework agreement, entitled “Together We Work for Hope”, between the governments of the Kashechewan First Nation, the Province of Ontario and Canada.
“This project is an example of how the emerging science of risk-informed decision-making, innovation, and practical engineering can serve to provide real long-term benefits to the public and the community. As engineers, we take great pride in being able to develop real-world solutions that really help people and we’ve been happy to have been able to help the people of the Kashechewan First Nation,” said Rick Donnelly, Hatch’s project sponsor.
To read more about the project, please visit https://www.hatch.com/en/Projects/Energy/Kashechewan-First-Nation-flood-risk-forecasting-and-mitigation.
The Ontario Consulting Engineering Awards recognize the knowledge, skills, and expertise of consulting engineers in Ontario and serve to showcase the importance of consulting engineering to improving the economic, social, and environmental well-being of Ontarians.
Winners of the 2018 Ontario Consulting Engineering Awards were announced at a gala event on April 21, 2018.
Hatch congratulates all of those that have been awarded this year.
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