City right to reconsider dam risk

This issue has been driven by a sense of emergency that has never existed.

To the Editor,

Re: New dam plan is to do nothing, Editorial, Feb. 5.

This issue has been driven by a sense of emergency that has never existed. The dams are not going to fail dramatically in a quake. There will not be huge waves from our lakes wiping out lower Harewood.

Part of the problem is that since discovering this valuable piece of information, the city then made some effort to convince us that we were now at risk from a hypothetical 50,000-year storm compromising the dams to the point that they could fail. Apparently the options presented only seem to be for drastic and costly engineering modifications to remedy this so-called problem.

These structures do not simply wear out over a certain amount of time. They were well-engineered and built on bedrock. They have managed every weather event for more than a century and likely help to prevent flooding downstream. We should all appreciate that council finally took steps to move away from the portrayal of imminent, catastrophic risk and will hopefully now consider reasonable and common sense alternatives. We have wasted too much time and money. Our city has far more pressing priorities.

Jeff SolomonColliery Dam Park Preservation Society

 

To the Editor,

Failure of our dams would kill more people than any of our building or bridges collapsing.

If you look at the lower dam you will see a crack on the new blacktop from the construction of the new bypass highway. Any nearby blasting for housing could make it fail.

I don’t understand why there is so much opposition by members of council and others. Did they not do their homework and why does it taking so long to start addressing such dangers? Do local people have to die first?

Ron Lillievia e-mail

 

To the Editor,

Re: New dam plan is to do nothing, Editorial, Feb. 5.

Your editorial has missed the point. At no time were the Colliery dams in jeopardy of busting open and causing flooding of biblical portions. And the city should never have wasted $2.5 million to try to convince us or the dam safety branch otherwise.

It has been city staff, for whatever underlying reasons, who came up with a plan out of nowhere to tell Victoria catastrophe was about to strike and to step in.

The city caused this sky-is-falling scenario and is to blame for the stupid waste of tax dollars.

R.C. StearmanNanaimo

 

To the Editor,

Re: New dam plan is to do nothing, Editorial, Feb. 5.

Now they are going to do another study of the Colliery dams. Meanwhile, the taxpayers’ money is sinking to the bottom of the water. It’s like the Energizer battery that goes on and on and on.

I hope it’s not going to be like Victoria where a sewage treatment plant has been talked about for years and years and is still not resolved.

Theresa KowallLadysmith

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