AERIAL VIEW: Water gushes from the compromised wall at the Bolzan Quarry dam this afternoon.
AERIAL VIEW: Water gushes from the compromised wall at the Bolzan Quarry dam this afternoon.

Dam wall damage unavoidable, says excavator

THE crisis unfolding at the Bolzan Quarry dam is repeated time and again, on a smaller scale, after prolonged drought weakened the structure of private dams across the Southern Downs.

Warwick excavator Steve Windle said it's a common issue facing his customers.

"There's quite a few dams around here now that have lost the middle of their dam walls," Mr Windle said.

"It's been so dry that the dam walls aren't compacted anymore, which means it's easier for them to move around.

"It takes a little while for the earth to soak up the seal again, which is your main issue when water comes down in such a hurry."

Mr Windle spoke to the Daily News as he prepared for a job on Yangan Rd this afternoon, where he would have to "dig out the middle and recompact it again."

"The worst thing is, with the weather the way it has been, there's really nothing you can do about it," he said.

Certain precautions could be taken, however, to avoid total collapse.

"Sometimes they don't make the dam wall wide enough to account for a lot of water coming into it in a hurry," he said.

"I like to make mine so wide you can drive a car around the top of it, so if there's any water running over it won't weaken and wash away. That's a common issue at the moment.

"You've also got to make sure you've got your levels right for your bywash, so the water can get around the corner without having to go over the wall."

The dam wall at Talgai doesn't appear as though it will fail completely in Mr Windle's opinion.

"There's enough water coming out of the middle there to take the pressure off it," he said.

"I think the authorities are just being cautious."


$2million to meet demand for kindy teachers

$2million to meet demand for kindy teachers

State Government rollout grant to upskill workers in the early childhood sector

Two warrants turn up postie bike parts and drugs

premium_icon Two warrants turn up postie bike parts and drugs

Two men have been charged after search warrants were executed by Monto police

Bringing art and smiles to the hospital

Bringing art and smiles to the hospital

Biloela hospital will soon boast an art gallery aimed at being a source of...