December 06, 1923

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News from December 6, 1923

News from December 6, 1923 (The Ithaca Journal, via™)

Disaster Serves as Warning for Hydro-Engineering

In 1923, a mountain reservoir in Italy experienced a disastrous event. The retaining wall of the reservoir broke, unleashing a flood that swept away entire villages and caused the loss of hundreds of lives. This incident underscored an escalating concern about public safety and the execution of large-scale hydro-engineering projects.

With the United States on the cusp of a major hydro-electric expansion, the tragic event in Italy posed a warning. Many of these American developments involved the creation of large reservoirs to stabilize and maintain water flow. Despite communities standing to gain directly from such technology, it was crucial that potential threats to life and property were addressed.

Many hydro-electric developments were under private auspices, often necessitating a return to investors within a defined period. This urgency emphasized the need for careful supervision of construction practices to ensure safety. A balance needed to be struck between the safe, yet profitable, execution of such projects.

Previous disasters, such as the collapse of the Gleno Lake dam in Italy, highlighted the inherent risks. Seen as the worst of its kind, it showcased the dangers of neglecting to anchor dams to solid rocks using concrete, an engineering practice considered progressive for its time.

Given these events, public authorities often faced pressure to ensure the adoption of good engineering practices in dam construction. This included ensuring that safety was not compromised in favor of cost-effectiveness.

Learn more about December 06, 1923 through historical newspapers from our archives. Explore newspaper articles, headlines, images, and other primary sources below.

Source Articles and Clippings

"December 06, 1923," Topics ( : accessed February 21, 2024)
Topics A Century Ago Today, December 1923 ,

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