Stress Building Behind Worcester Dams
(NECN: Melissa Toupin, Worcester, Mass.) - Many of the Dams holding Worcester's water supply in place have been neglected over the years and are now in desperate need of repairs. The Massachusetts Office of Dam Safety places some of the responsibility for repairs on dam owners. Worcester is responsible for 29 dams- and six of those are currently listed in either poor or unsafe condition by the state.
The City's DPW Commissioner, Robert Moylan, says the neglected dams come with a high price tag. He estimates the city is looking at an annual bill of $1.5 million dollars for the next ten years. In order to reduce the financial burden on the city Moylan says he is considering breaching 3 of the smaller dams instead of repairing them. That means they would no longer hold water.
Moylan says a large portion of the dams are in fair condition. But the dams are still a major safety concern since nearly half of the one's Worcester owns fall under the state's high hazard classification. That means that if the structure did fail the results could be disastrous.