Harding Dam comes close to overflowing for the first time in three years

12/02/2020

For the first time in three years the Pilbara’s iconic Harding Dam is nearing full capacity thanks to heavy rainfall brought by Tropical Cyclone Damien.

 

Water Corporation North West Regional Manager Sharon Broad said the last time Harding Dam was at full capacity was February 2017 after a low pressure system brought significant rainfall to the area.

 

“Prior to Tropical Cyclone Damien, Harding Dam was sitting at only 18 per cent capacity and was taken offline so it is fantastic to see the dam replenished to near full capacity,” Mrs Broad said.

 

“It will only take one more rainfall event in the coming months for us to see the dam start to overflow in quite a spectacular fashion.”

 

Once Harding Dam reaches full capacity, water overflows via a spillway into the Harding River, which flows past the banks of the downstream recreational picnic area.

 

Mrs Broad said Harding Dam experienced a loss of power and communications to the area during the tropical cyclone and would remain closed to the public until Saturday, 15 February to ensure the site had been made safe.

 

“While we know the community will be very excited to see Harding Dam full again, our first priority is the safety of the community so we are asking everyone to please avoid the area until we can ensure it’s safe, with the dam expected to open again to the public this Saturday,” Mrs Broad said.

 

“In the meantime, we are reminding the local community to please switch off their sprinkler reticulation systems – which should not be needed for at least the next few days after gardens received a free drink from Damien.”

 

Water Corporation has been supplying the West Pilbara Water Supply Scheme from the Millstream and Bungaroo aquifers since late 2019 when Harding Dam was taken offline due to its low water level.

 

In the coming weeks, Water Corporation will reinstate Harding Dam as the primary water source for the West Pilbara Water Supply Scheme.

 

Harding Dam can hold 64 billion litres of water, which is enough water to supply Karratha, Wickham, Dampier, Roebourne and Point Samson residents connected to the West Pilbara Water Supply Scheme for approximately 18 months.



Media Enquiries:

Contact: Jessica Wilson

Position: North West Region - Senior Advisor Customer and Stakeholder

Phone: (08) 9186 8266