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Dam failure analysis for the Lago El Guineo Dam, Orocovis, Puerto Rico

Scientific Investigations Report 2016-5070

Prepared in cooperation with the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority
By:
and
https://doi.org/10.3133/sir20165070

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Abstract

The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the Puerto Rico Electric Power Authority, completed hydrologic and hydraulic analyses to assess the potential hazard to human life and property associated with the hypothetical failure of the Lago El Guineo Dam. The Lago El Guineo Dam is within the headwaters of the Río Grande de Manatí and impounds a drainage area of about 4.25 square kilometers.

The hydrologic assessment was designed to determine the outflow hydrographs and peak discharges for Lago El Guineo and other subbasins in the Río Grande de Manatí hydrographic basin for three extreme rainfall events: (1) a 6-hour probable maximum precipitation event, (2) a 24-hour probable maximum precipitation event, and (3) a 24-hour, 100-year recurrence rainfall event. The hydraulic study simulated a dam failure of Lago El Guineo Dam using flood hydrographs generated from the hydrologic study. The simulated dam failure generated a hydrograph that was routed downstream from Lago El Guineo Dam through the lower reaches of the Río Toro Negro and the Río Grande de Manatí to determine water-surface profiles developed from the event-based hydrologic scenarios and “sunny day” conditions. The Hydrologic Engineering Center’s Hydrologic Modeling System (HEC–HMS) and Hydrologic Engineering Center’s River Analysis System (HEC–RAS) computer programs, developed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, were used for the hydrologic and hydraulic modeling, respectively. The flow routing in the hydraulic analyses was completed using the unsteady flow module available in the HEC–RAS model.

Above the Lago El Guineo Dam, the simulated inflow peak discharges from HEC–HMS resulted in about 550 and 414 cubic meters per second for the 6- and 24-hour probable maximum precipitation events, respectively. The 24-hour, 100-year recurrence storm simulation resulted in a peak discharge of about 216 cubic meters per second. For the hydrologic analysis, no dam failure conditions are considered within the model. The results of the hydrologic simulations indicated that for all hydrologic conditions scenarios, the Lago El Guineo Dam would not experience overtopping. For the dam breach hydraulic analysis, failure by piping was the selected hypothetical failure mode for the Lago El Guineo Dam.

Results from the simulated dam failure of the Lago El Guineo Dam using the HEC–RAS model for the 6- and 24-hour probable maximum precipitation events indicated peak discharges below the dam of 1,342.43 and 1,434.69 cubic meters per second, respectively. Dam failure during the 24-hour, 100-year recurrence rainfall event resulted in a peak discharge directly downstream from Lago El Guineo Dam of 1,183.12 cubic meters per second. Dam failure during sunny-day conditions (no precipitation) produced a peak discharge at Lago El Guineo Dam of 1,015.31 cubic meters per second assuming the initial water-surface elevation was at the morning-glory spillway invert elevation.

The results of the hydraulic analysis indicate that the flood would extend to many inhabited areas along the stream banks from the Lago El Guineo Dam to the mouth of the Río Grande as a result of the simulated failure of the Lago El Guineo Dam. Low-lying regions in the vicinity of Ciales, Manatí, and Barceloneta, Puerto Rico, are among the regions that would be most affected by failure of the Lago El Guineo Dam. Effects of the flood control (levee) structure constructed in 2000 to provide protection to the low-lying populated areas of Barceloneta, Puerto Rico, were considered in the hydraulic analysis of dam failure. The results indicate that overtopping can be expected in the aforementioned levee during 6- and 24-hour probable maximum precipitation events. The levee was not overtopped during dam failure scenarios under the 24-hour, 100-year recurrence rainfall event or sunny-day conditions.

Suggested Citation

Gómez-Fragoso, Julieta, and Torres-Sierra, Heriberto, 2016, Dam failure analysis for the Lago El Guineo Dam, Orocovis, Puerto Rico: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016–5070, 49 p., 4 pls., http://dx.doi.org/10.3133/sir20165070.

ISSN: 2328-0328 (online)

Study Area

Table of Contents

  • Abstract 
  • Introduction
  • Hydrologic Study
  • Hydraulic Study
  • Uncertainties in the Flood Inundation Maps
  • Summary and Conclusions
  • References Cited
  • Appendix 1. Hydrologic Engineering Center’s Hydrologic Modeling System Output Hydrographs for the Dam Failure Analysis of the Lago El Guineo Dam, Orocovis, Puerto Rico 

Additional publication details

Publication type:
Report
Publication Subtype:
USGS Numbered Series
Title:
Dam failure analysis for the Lago El Guineo Dam, Orocovis, Puerto Rico
Series title:
Scientific Investigations Report
Series number:
2016-5070
DOI:
10.3133/sir20165070
Year Published:
2016
Language:
English
Publisher:
U.S. Geological Survey
Publisher location:
Reston, VA
Contributing office(s):
Caribbean Water Science Center
Description:
Report: vi, 49 p.; 4 Plates: 29 x 35 inches; 2 Data Releases
Country:
Puerto Rico
City:
Orocovis
Other Geospatial:
Lago El Guineo Dam
Online Only (Y/N):
Y
Additional Online Files (Y/N):
Y