Pole Drain Systems
CREEK LIVE POLE DRAINS
Inter-site Pipeline right-of way at Beaver Creek,
near Fort McMurray, Alberta.
restore stability of slope slumping/failures
site using soil bioengineering structures and
to provide drainage of surface & subsurface
seepage water using live pole drain systems.
2004, 2005 and 2007 Terra Erosion Control installed
live pole drain (LPD) systems at the Beaver
Creek site. This project consisted of three
phases: I, II, III.
October 2004, LPD systems were installed to
drain excess surface and seepage water off a
bench area within the pipeline right-of-way.
Initially the water caused soil slumping/failures
down slope on steeper area of the right-of-way.
The LPD systems were constructed to drain this
water into a bordering forested area.
LPD systems consisted of four central pole drains
structures, each approximately 70 to 80 meters
in length with lateral drain fascines of approximately
4 to 5 metres. The central pole drains were
constructed using cylindrical bundles of live
cuttings of approximately 30 cm in diameter
and using lateral drain fascines bundles of
approximately 15 to 20 cm in diameter.
trenches were dug using a small excavator at
a slope gradient of 2-3% to allow drainage.
Other treatments were applied to the site in
between structures such as muskeg (organic mulch)
and native grass seed.
live cuttings used consisted of a mix of Willow
species (Salix bebbiana / scouleriana /
exigua), Black Cottonwood (Populus
balsamifera ssp. trichocarpa) and Red-Osier
Dogwood (Cornus stolonifera). The structures
were secured using wooden stakes.
LPD systems have been very effective at draining
excess water off the pipeline right-of-way into
the adjacent forested area. The outlets of the
central pole drain structures were installed
in a staggered pattern (i.e. different locations
to spread water outflow over a larger area).
Due to the lay of the land, the drained water
gathered in a receiving area away from the right
away and created a small slide during the spring
of 2005. This small failure was also stabilized
using a LPD system in the fall of 2005 (see
Phase II structure).
also that sections of the LPD structures installed
in 2004 were destroyed in the spring of 2007
during repairs of the pipeline and re-constructed
in the fall of 2007.
see a complete description of the project see
the link for Syncrude
Canada Beaver Creek Project Phase I, II, III.