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ASDSO Dam Safety 2016 Student Paper Competition Winners

Congratulations to Emily Reed, Lucas Munasque, and Kalie Poston for winning the national 2016 Student Paper Competition sponsored by the American Society of Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO)!

The student team, advised by Dr. Alfred Kalyanapu and Dr. Daniel VandenBerge, is investigating the effects of and response to the historic rainfall in South Carolina in October 2015 and the ensuing dam breaks. The research project included a recent trip to Columbia, SC to experience the flood impacts firsthand and to interview individuals and agencies involved in the response. The team will travel to Philadelphia in September to present their research at the Dam Safety 2016 conference.

The project mainly focuses on understanding how the floods happened and the response and recovery process. Students are collecting all the available technical data, media coverage and compiling public response information. This will be used to assess impacts on future flood risk management in South Carolina and public opinion regarding dam safety awareness, policy and emergency response. As a part of data collection and understanding the flood impacts, the team visited areas damaged in the floods around Columbia, SC and met with people affected by the floods. The team also met with government agencies that were in charge of emergency management to understand both sides of the situation.

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