Preservation Engineer: Yaakov Shaffer
Client: Besor Shikma Drainage Authority, via the Yeruham Economic Development Corporation
The Yeruham Lake dam was built in the 1950s as part of the Negev Development Program in the early years of the State. In order to determine the engineering and preservation condition of the dam, and in order to examine the possibility of safe tourist access to it as part of the development of the Yeruham Park, we were asked to conduct a number of structural investigations. The work included horizontal and vertical drilling along the entire dam, penetration of the bedrock in order to extract core samples for laboratory checks, the excavation of test pits below the water line in order to expose and check for signs of cracking, and the creation of large diameter test pits in the run-off area of the dam.
The main challenges in this unique project were the difficulty of access to the drilling sites on the dam, the work carried out below water level using specially designed and constructed levee structures, and the drainage and support of the test pits.