Secord Dam Update 2022 – Timeline Review – New Engineering Concepts – Dam Collapse
Hopefully you can hear me over the raging water behind me uh before i get this video started. I want to thank my new patreons, kevin, scott and lynn and for people sending me letters to the mail huge support from rich and bonnie. This just allows me to keep doing what i love doing coming up here and filming these dams. Let me get this. Camera turned around and well take a closer look at seacord dam. I dont make it up to this dam a whole lot. The main reason of that being is it is the northernmost dam out of the five dams uh that are under construction by the four lakes task force right now, it is about an hour drive for me to get up to this. Damn small wood dam is just south of here uh, not too far, so i will be stopping at smallwood dam as well again today and filming a quick update as to whats going on there, like i said, secord is the northernmost dam, so smallwood dam is just South of here, and then we get to wixen lake, which has the edenville and the tobacco river dam on it and then even further south. We have the sanford dam down there in sanford michigan. So that is the five dams that i generally cover over here on. Both the titabwasi river and the tobacco river side, especially with how much gas prices are right now, you can probably understand why i dont come up to this dam as much as the others.
There is a link in the description down below for coffee, though, if anyone wants to buy me a drink or buy me, a tank gas check that out its actually a pretty cool way to support the channel, they dont charge any fees which is great because a Lot of the other platforms do charge fees and a quick update on the live camera here at c, core dam, only 680 more dollars before were able to raise enough money to get a live camera installed on this dam, then people will be able to see whats Going on here, 24 7.. It would be great to install this one on the powerhouse as well im, not sure if that would be allowed. If not, i am able to install it over there on the secord township fire department. They have a pole, thats about 100 feet up in the air and we can see the dam from that area. Jumping into the drone video now im to the south of secord dam going to be flying under the secord dam bridge. Road make sure you stay tuned till the end of this video. There has been a few changes with the construction uh, the proposed construction that will be happening here at seacord dam during the rebuild process. These rocks are actually forcing the water to the center of the channel so that theres, no erosion happening along the embankments im going to fly right up here in front of secord dam.
You can see the water. This is considered, run up the river right now. So the amount of water entering the dam is the same. That is exiting the back, so maintaining the water level on the back side of the dam actually quite a bit flowing over the top of the dam right now over here. On the left hand, side of the screen is where they did pour that new wall. You can see a couple of those pipes exiting for weep. Holes to allow for drainage from the embankments looks like this wall is holding up pretty good, though i dont see any sort of degradation in it. Well, turn the camera up to the top of the dam pretty soon, but i was just getting a nice close up view of the work that has been complete here now. We can see the water coming over the top of secord dam over here and the tanner gates in their fully raised positions. So the drone is facing towards the north right now im going to start panning the camera over to the right. We will take a closer up look at the powerhouse over here and where the water used to exit the turbines looks like theres, quite a bit of degrading concrete the reinforced concrete over here, a lot of spalling happening from the rebar that is rusting inside of this Reinforced concrete, you can see a little bit of that water exiting the weep holes over there on the right hand, side as well.
That was a check in and seeing if i could see any of the fish down here in the water um, usually when the suns out its pretty easy to see them. But this day there wasnt a whole lot of sun out. You can see that water exiting the bottom section there now and the stairway down to this area a door up there that is chained off thats, how you exit this area and get to this location from the powerhouse again kind of checking out the spalling happening up Here, on the concrete that is supporting the powerhouse area, ill drop a little bit further in altitude. Usually this area is filled with barn swallows, so once they start nesting, this area will be a lot harder to start to film. That should be happening very soon. So we probably wont see this area again until the fall time frame so backing up a little bit further. Trying to get the entirety of this dam in one frame always capturing lots of pictures when im out there thats. Usually when you see a cut in the video, is i stop filming video snap, a quick picture and these i upload over on my patreon channel. So if you want to check those out, you can go over check out my patreon link in the description down below. Sometimes i post a few public sneak peeks as to what ive been working on what ive been filming well, keep gaining altitude.
Now we can see up here to the north on the other side of secord dam. How high the water level is a little bit wider than a river here. The people that live closer to the dam have a little bit of a lake yet, but a greatly reduced volume from what used to be here um when these gates were lowered and secord dam was actually a lake ill, keep gaining altitude a little bit further im Flying all the way up to 400 feet in altitude, seeing what things look like from way up here looks like we got a guy coming out fishing here, so hopefully hes successful. I have seen a couple fish down here in the water. Maybe well be able to pick those up a little bit easier from the drone lets. Take a look down river real quick i do want to mention, though, were almost to 33 000 subscribers, though so, if youre not subscribed yet make sure you go down below and do that also hit that thumbs up the like button and leave any questions and comments. You have down below as well down river water level is a little bit high right now, but its down quite a bit from where it was earlier. In the year we had all that spring fall. Snow melt come through weve also had quite a few high rain events that have been keeping the water levels high down to the south of here and see what theyre trying to do here, though, with the rocks that have been installed here, forcing all that water to The center of the channel, that is, stopping erosion from happening on each side of the banks here, also quite a bit of rip rap.
You know underneath the bridge along each side of the embankments here, so erosion is not really an issue here. Right now, jumping back to the drone video now probably about 250 feet in altitude still gaining altitude, though i will be flying all the way up to 400 feet very shortly, and the drone is still facing towards the north starting to see a little bit more of The water volume up here to the north of the dam im going to start flying up this direction well actually go directly over the top of the dam, get that top down view, and then we will look up to the north, see how the lake bed is. Looking so shot directly over the top of the dam and all these little dots out here uh. Actually, this would be behind the dam up here to the north may look like all birds sitting on the water, but those are all stumps that are sticking out of the water. You can see a little bit more of those stumps over here. On the left hand, side that used to be what the old lake bottom was littered with and still is today when the water is refilled, a lot of those will probably still remain. One of the new proposed concept that is being discussed right now is actually, instead of doing a sheet pile cut off wall through this earthen embankment, switching that to an scb wall. So scb stands for soil cement bentonite.
This would be a slurry wall that they would literally go through trench through the earthen embankment and lay down the soil, cement bentonite mixture, and that would replace the steel sheet. Pile um stay tuned to the end, to see more of that, but now im going to jump back into the video on the ground. As always, i will be covering the engineering diagrams and details at the end of this video so make sure you stay tuned. For that well be able to see whats going to be happening here. Also, i want people to stay tuned for a little while longer, i will be covering the construction work that will be going on here at the end of this video. So i know theres been a lot of uh questions regarding well. Why is there no work being done up here on secret and small wood dam and work is being done down there on sanford dam? I think it is very important for people to understand the work that has been completed on the damn south of here and is currently ongoing, and why there is not work physically being seen done here so were going down down there at sanford. Dam is for interim stabilization that work is just to prevent erosion from happening its to get the river the tidabossi river flowing back through sanford dam, and then that embankment, you know where the breach channel is right now can be filled in and stop erosion from happening There, a lot of the money right now is being funded by nrcs natural resource conservation service, so for likes task force is making good use of that money.
Incorporating even some of the the interim stabilization work into what the final construction work uh will be need to happen here, to get these dams uh rebuilt and allow the lakes to be refilled. So once the interim stabilization is complete down there in stanford dam, that will mean that all five dams have the interim stabilization complete. Then construction can begin on these dams, so the construction phase is the phase of the work thats going to be happening to refill these lakes, so new spillways, new sister walls being poured new crest gates. After all that construction phase work is complete, then the gates can be act in this case raised as in crest gates and tainer gates, you would lower the gates to fill the lakes and then the lakes can be refilled. I know there has been a ton of people commenting on facebook when i post updates saying well. Why is there not work going on here at secorddam, so i think its very important for people to stay educated as to the work thats ongoing. The work that has been completed and stay tuned to the end of this video to see what needs to be done here on this dam to refill this lake, both seacord and smallwood lake, are estimated to be refilled in 2024.. They will be the first lakes to be refilled. Sanford lake is not estimated to be refilled until 2025 in wixom lake until 2026.. I know theres been a lot of people saying why.
Why can they just not lower these gates and refill the lakes? You know people said the dams have not failed here on secord and smallwood dam. That is beside the fact that there are major issues wrong with this dam. Yet the lakes cannot be refilled. This is not up to the four lakes task force. This is up to many federal and government agencies. There needs to be a lot of repairs done in order for that work to happen, ill actually, post up a timeline on the screen right now, so that people can see what work and when it will be completed and started here on c core dam and yeah. A lot of the work ongoing right now, you cant really see us physically, but there has been a ton of studies. Engineering studies done flood control studies, water studies done as to how much flows coming through this dam and how much flow needs to be allowed for. In the new dam design to make sure that these dams can pass the water in a high flow event like we had a couple years ago, when we saw edenville and sanford dam fail, but just a couple of the big items that will be constructed here. On secord dam there will be new sister wall port here and there will be new crest gates installed up here. Lets go over to the other side of the dam now well. Take a look at the ireland embankment and well take a look at the seacord lake bed.
Lake bottom and yeah well update you on whats happening over there on the other side of the earthen embankment im directly over the top of the c chord dam. Again, probably about 50 feet in altitude, if i had to guess well come over here behind the dam start dropping in an altitude a little bit. The drone is facing towards the south now and well get a close up view of the gates, as well as the area that water would have passed into. The powerhouse area is pretty hard to see, except by drone or by boat, and you know, if you had a boat or canoe in this area directly behind the dam. That would not be a good idea. I think youd probably end up going right over the top of the dam, but thats what these uh barrels are for in front of the dam location here is to keep that from happening again. You can see how high these tanner gates are raised up higher than they usually were before the dams had failed, and that was part of the reason why edenville dam failed. It wasnt able to raise the gates up high enough to be able to pass the amount of flow in that high water event. So cant even see the water ripples going over the top of the dam, because its so smooth you can see down there to the south, though that gentleman is still fishing and over here, on the left hand side you can see the grates where the water enters Into the powerhouse and used to pass through into the turbines to produce hydro power, im going to start panning the camera over to the left and tell you about another new constep theyre, actually talking about using an rcc emergency auxiliary spillway over here.
On the right hand, side of this earthen embankment and changing it to a side discharge. This will provide a little bit more of a right of way for c core, damn road, because the old concept came right up next to it. So including this side discharge will provide a little bit more room there. You can see just how steep this earthen embankment is youll, be able to see more about this concept at the end of the video that i was just talking about, though, looks like someones over there burning some stuff, but now we can see more of those stumps Out here on the lake bed, you can see that the water level is a little bit higher than usual, because usually these small trees that you can see in this area are above water and ill fly out here. Well see a little bit more of how these saplings are doing. They are really thriving out here on the lake bed. A lot of these are mostly cottonwood and a couple willow trees mixed in, and you can see some more of those stumps out here on the lake bed heres the area to the east of secord dam, so secret dam right down there in the background, looks like Theres, a little sand staged here a little bit of gravel crushed limestone. Possibly the public access where i was just filming is right down there right down underneath the secord dam bridge that is directly to the south of the secord dam public access parking right over here.
You can kind of see some of the drains down here that allows water out of the earthen embankment, so it looks like theres a couple of these dripping. You probably cant see it from the camera, but just a little bit of water dripping out of these looks like a lot of these are just uh, sdr, 35 or dstm sewer drain pipe, probably about four inch, and then that water flows down the ditch down to Secret dam back there all right lets, take a look at the other side of the urban embankment. Now, before we jump into the video on the other side of the earth, embankment ill leave you with this last clip from the drone flying over the top of the tidabowasi river at a fairly low altitude, probably about 20 feet and were going to go back over Here circle around square dam, one last time, another common question that people usually had is how deep was this lake? The lake is approximately 40 feet deep at its deepest point and is 815 acres that was before this was drawn down to the run of the river. As we see right now, but when the new gates are installed, then the dam is rebuilt. Construction begins again here that is estimated to be at the exact same height as the water level before the dam failures happened, so everything should be exactly back to the way it was and uh water depth the same up here on the other side of the earthen Embankment, so this is the area to the north of secord dam secord dam right down there pretty peaceful morning out here.
You know its a saturday morning, its pretty warm its supposed to get up to believe almost 80 degrees. Today, right now, i think its about 55 degrees, so starting to get there a little bit do got my pair of sunglasses on that somebody sent me last year. If you want to send me anything again, my p.o box is in the description down below also anyone that is interested in the equipment that im using make sure you check out the links in the description down below. I have amazon affiliate links to all the equipment that i use and uh. You know if you click those and go ahead and purchase anything from amazon within 24 hours. They kick a small portion of the proceeds back to the channel its a couple geese landing out there right now. You can probably hear them out here on the lake bed, though vegetation is probably going to start greening up very soon now that were, in the springtime, a lot of trees growing over here, a lot of those cottonwood willow, trees, couple cattails and all these things you See dotted out here in the water are tree stumps, so this area used to be a forest. There was woods here before the dams were even installed here in the first place and they went through and cut all these trees down. So im like refilled, these stumps were kind of just sitting underneath the water, quite a hazard, to boaters prop damage.
I wouldnt even uh want to fathom what would happen if you were skiing and ended up falling on. One of these stumps same is true for a lot of our lakes. Our man made lakes here in michigan, though up there in oscoda foot dam pond along the asabo river same way: tons of trees underneath the water just below the water line that you can actually see straight down. I know theres a lot of people that lose boat anchors fishing hooks on them. Let me turn the camera and well look at the earthen embankment over here. This is one area where one of those core studies were complete, so you can see some of the borings that were here not sure if this was actually from the boring either when they maybe put the hole down through there. Probably under that cap and see straight down in there probably will see a little bit of water and some of the material that came out of the boring, also in this area in the future planes that youll see at the end of this video. This is almost probably right where the auxiliary spillway will be coming through, maybe a little bit further to the east of here from where they have the diagram drawn, but the emergency spillway uh, if secord dam, cannot handle the amount of flow going through it. The water would overflow right here on the emergency, auxiliary spillway, come behind the earthen embankment and then go down there in front of the bridge, so thats kind of some of the other future plans that need to be complete before the lake is allowed to refill.
You can see this earthen embankment how steep it is as well im surprised they havent had more erosion happening on this over the last. You know, stamps been here for almost 100 years at least theres a vegetation growing on it and thats. Probably the only reason that this is not eroding even further got. Some almost looks like river rock down here: stone not rip rap its, not limestone. It might be a couple chunks of a rip rap limestone in there. I also want to mention, though, right now at this time, were working on building our dream home. So if you want to check that out check out my other channel, the mowbray family channel and right now, they are working on doing the drywall and insulation on the inside. So waiting on a couple more windows to come in, you know with these covered shortages, its kind of a little harder to build. When we have this many shortages happening, but theres been a lot of dirt moving. We ended up constructing in half an acre pond. So go check that out, if youre interested, also, if youve been enjoying this video, this long make sure you go down below hit the like button, make sure you subscribe to the channel and leave any questions and comments. Do you have down below? I think that im gon na wrap up this video. Now, though, im gon na head to the south of here go down to smallwood dam film, a quick update down there and then i might head down to sanford dam as well.
There goes a wood duck out there. You know theres, just a ton of wildlife always out here also dont want to forget. I do want to get a tour of the inside of this powerhouse as well, so hopefully im able to arrange that in the next couple of months, hopefully im able to get that done. This springtime all right. So this uh, this slide is kind of a pretty high level overview of what were proposing. Um weve been coordinating with the win one pass on this new cutoff wall, um kind of different technology than driving steel sheet pile, but this is uh. You know were kind of going through our proof of concept and the engineering design or swapping the system out. Carlin grunderman has been kind of leading that task and again we had some pretty pretty good discussions last week, so we dont really want to go too far into it. I think that the high level is its a different technology. Here we are going through all this seepage instability calculations to make sure this is um. This is going to work um. It does result in some slight modifications to the grading plan. I believe the impacts actually are going to be slightly less um. If you go to the next slide kelsey, i think one thing that were working through thank you on this slide is that we do have to cut down the crest about three feet: uh just to get the um about a 25 foot wide work platform to construct.
This and were proposing to do this here very quickly, um in terms of a construction duration um, so that the risk of the lowered uh embankment um is, is relatively low. Um, so were working through kind of this revised grading plan, uh the new sequence of work. All the seepage and stability calculations um and working with uh dewy to come up with a mix design for this cutoff wall um, so youll be seeing a lot more information, but i think you kind of see on this. Drawing here, the impacts are are less than we posed previously um and and later in the slide deck here well kind of show, when youre going to see, see new information on this um. I dont know if carlin, if youre on the call, if theres any high level information that i glossed over, that you want to add to it, but if not we keep moving. Can i be carlin? Go ahead, carlin yeah, i was just going to say. The only thing id really add to that paul is the. I just want to point out that we are retaining some sheeting to tie into the the training walls there and so theres, an intersection between the sheeting and the the cutoff wall. Thats a detail that were working out, but the timing of that installation is important and i think other than that um you know we we are planning to include some upstream uh super sax, rather additional flood support during construction to prevent overtopping in the event that there Was a flood while that crust is cut down so thats um thats, probably it great yep yep.
Thank you. Those those are the details that are really tying it into the existing existing spillway structures right because its tough to get to get in there and install that in that location, right yeah after the sheeting, correct, yep, yep, okay, all right and then um. The other kind of this is kind of a bigger, bigger change in terms of overall impact. Um actually has a smaller, smaller footprint on the site, but were proposing uh to swap out the previously proposed auxiliary spillway. If you kind of remember that alignment, it hugged core damn road, pretty closely um within within our current right away. So this is this is a new alternative. Um with would be an rcc side, channel spillway, and i think on the next slide. It kind of shows a few of the benefits here is that we get rid of the flashboards that were previously proposed. The dam crest is up at a higher elevation, because the spillway is is significantly longer on the dam crest. We would be. You know constructing this. With an rcc plan on site, we provide greater separation between c core dam road, as well as the as the road bridge from our spillway and were working through the detail. Um of making sure that this integrates well with the new proposed cut off wall weve been doing a significant amount of hydrology hydraulics to analyze this new spillway and were running this through a cfd model and well be presenting that as part of our 90 percent design.
So weve weve done enough proof of concept to feel comfortable with this design presented it to eagle and aecom. I think, were on the same page, moving forward and well provide uh a lot more information going forward yeah, and this slide here kelsey. I think uh kind of summarizes all of that so um a lot more, a lot more to see here as part of our 90 design, but all of these new site impacts that weve proposed um would be you know, submitted as part of our our correction request On the new impacts, um on c chord on the c core damp site, thanks paul ryan, thanks kelsey um, as you can see here, heres a kind of a general site layout of the east side of c core dam um, similar to some some figures that we Have shown in the past, but this replaces the old auxiliary spillway that basically hugged the seacore dam road right away with the rcc spillway. You can kind of see with the brown shaded area kind of represents the some areas that were going to have to work with. For access and staging um in general, i think this design of the impacts are. It gives us a little more cushion away from the road right away a little more space to work with um, maybe some some options as far as um, how we handle the storm drainage and the storm sewer system off of c core dam road.
So those are some um design details that were taking a look at, but i think kind of generally its a net positive relative to um. You know the the county, road, um and road right away. Um one area thats complicated a little bit is um the downstream um slope of the berm um for the the powerhouse we we dont really have the feasibility of uh getting vehicle access down to the lower door of the powerhouse um, so were looking at some. Some new design, um alternatives for for the powerhouse, as far as being able to um reach loads to the to the top top of the berm and be able to access through maybe, options such as gantry cranes and things like that. So um thats thats thats sort of a an area that were working through design options right now, um. So i think we can move the next one thanks brian, so weve obviously submitted the secret dam permit and we had received the correction request with the alternatives and the change of the design. We obviously need to modify the permits middle, so we will be doing exactly the same that weve weve done in the initial submittal, and i think weve already talked about this, obviously with a 301, 31, 303 and 315 and then obviously with the other additional applicable permits. Soil erosion notice of coverage, any county road commission permitting and then any additional planning or zoning building permitting will be moving through those efforts as well so obviously with the alternatives that brian or that paul drew talked about.
Um well be making those necessary modifications to the permitting sheets that were submitted to eagle as part of as part of the my waters. Permanent application im just going to briefly go through whats to be expected with that. Submittal so well be modifying our part 31 sheet to reflect that change in the auxiliary spillway, obviously with uh the design civil changes that brian talked about its not a hundred percent yet but well be working to modify as applicable. The part 31 sheets um, the cross sections – will be updated and quantities will be updated as applicable and will be resubmitted. The same way that we initially did same thing with 301 um based on the ultimate hey. Kelsey. Hey sorry, sorry to interrupt you, i think, theres a question. Sorry dan von go ahead. Thank you, yeah! Sorry, you actually started diving into a little bit more, maybe of what i was raising my hand about um and brian rudolph. You can comment on this as well, but just to go ahead and kind of state from our viewpoint, as you guys are looking to submit modified plans and documents, as we consider you know putting this out for public notice, i think its going to be really important For us to be able to have, you know a clean set um when we actually get to the point where were looking at administratively complete uh package well want to have a clean set so rather than sending us sheets here and there that youre swapping out well Want to have a complete package yup and thats the plan too, so the uh, the dam, all the damn design work and the environmental permitting sheets its going to be one complete, set and thatll all be resubmitted.
The same way that weve done in the past. So the modifications that paul has been having discussions with you and as dated during this meeting that will be included with our permits middle brian rudolph. Did you have a comment on that? Are you good? No, no, i think dan dan caught it. We just have to have a very comprehensive plan set for the public noticing solid yep, yeah thats great, thank you yep and then the same thing with the three or with the 301 um. Obviously, therell be some modifications on the upstream face, and those quantities and cross sections will all be updated to reflect that those changes with the alternatives and then the same thing with the part. 303 wetlands well be modifying cross sections, as applicable with the modifications to the design. Any temporary permanent impacts will be called out, quantities, cross sections and everything will be updated depending on design changes um one and one other thing to note on that. We have been having communications pertaining to wetland credits and well be working on um, putting together documents as far as total quantities of impacts in the next coming month: brian yep hi, kelsey, um, okay, so on local agency and utility coordination. Um, like i mentioned um in the slide previously uh, we will be working with the staff at gladland county road commission on the um on on the revised um uh designs. For for for c core dam um.
We had previously shared the 60 drawings, which you know they were. They were generally uh. You know positive as far as input um, you know, pending final designs, were kind of clocked back a little bit and you know adjusting the designs, but i think in general the impacts with the road commission will be somewhat less uh township land use permitting. I think again we had shared the 60 drawings um at that time. Those um uh not not too much feedback on the 60 other than work were going to be doing at the powerhouse. We will be having some significant changes, i think, to the powerhouse design. So uh those are in development and well be. You know working closely with uh the township and then the you know: county building, department uh, especially especially uh, soil erosion and sedimentation control with the conservation district um you know, certainly are you know, revising the layout and grading plan and well be adjusting the scsc plans. Accordingly, some fairly significant changes relative to consumers, energy we had originally planned on. You know taking the the overhead high voltage line that comes from the east along the north side of secord dam road. The original plan was to take that underground, underneath the old auxiliary spillway design to be able to come up on the kind of on the other side, where we had some more flat area to work with, to have a transformer pad and to be able to feed The powerhouse thats not going to be the case now with that the new spillway and then the steeper slopes on the downstream side of the embankment really arent, allowing us for to have that underground service from the east side so were going to be working closely with Consumers, energy to um, i think what were going to be looking at is extending the overhead high voltage further to the west across the across the river, probably along the south side of secord dam road and then come up um our new uh west side access roads That you can, you can sort of see on this this drawing here and then and then basically probably go underground and then feed the powerhouse from the west side.
So thats thats, probably the main change relative to utility coordination that were looking at, but uh were working through those details, um so its. It must be any questions thanks for watching and make sure you hit the thumbs up button. If you enjoyed this, video also make sure you subscribe, so you dont miss the next videos. I will be posting and leave your questions, comments and suggestions below. As always, i just want to give a massive thanks to the people who support me on patreon. Never underestimate the value of your contribution to keeping this channel going.