April Webinar

The BC Extreme Flood Project

April 29, 2021   11:00 AM PST, 2:00 PM EST

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BC Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development


The Dam Safety Section of the British Columbia provincial government initiated a unique project to provide information for calculating the magnitude of an extreme flood event in BC. The guidance and associated products developed for the entire province (the Project) include:

1) Regional Flood Frequency Analysis (RFFA)

2) Regional Precipitation Frequency Analysis (RPFA)

3) Probable Maximum Precipitation (PMP)

The Project hydrometeorological deliverables include gridded probable maximum precipitation and probable maximum storm depth values at transposition points across the province as well as precipitation quantile depth values at any location across the province. The Project flood analysis deliverables include frequency analysis station reports for over 800 hydrometric stations in the study region, assignment of flood regions, regional flood prediction equations, and guidance on estimating the magnitude of extreme flood quantiles. Historical flood related information obtained from local and regional archives was incorporated into the flood frequency analysis of selected streamflow gauges and a methodology for validating such historical information proposed. In addition, guidance documents have been completed for practitioners to utilize when completing flood studies with the hydrometeorological and flood flow analysis information.

Learning Objectives:

Webinar participants will:

· Gain a high-level overview of the project including the challenges involved with completing a study over an entire province considering the highly variable climate zones,

· Gain a better appreciation for conducting defensible RFFA, RPFA, and PMP hydrotechnical studies for specific reservoirs,

· Learn the value of completing regional flood studies for any province or territory, and

· Learn specific components of the state of the science for estimating the magnitude of extreme flood events.

Technical information and project methodologies from the BC Extreme Flood Project can be incorporated into all magnitude of flood estimate analysis projects in BC and will be of benefit to any dam safety professionals who complete hydrotechnical studies in Canada. The project overview will be of interest to hydrotechnical consultants, dam regulators, as well as dam owners and operators.

The British Columbia Extreme Flood Project – Speaker Bios

Alyssa Hendricks Dietrich

Senior Hydrometeorologist DTN, LLC


Alyssa is a senior hydrometeorologist with DTN, LLC (formerly MetStat, Inc.). She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Atmospheric Science from Purdue University with a minor in Natural Resources and Environmental Science, and a Master of Science degree in Watershed Science from Colorado State University. Alyssa was the technical lead for the British Columbia Regional Frequency Precipitation Analysis and Probable Maximum Precipitation studies. She has six years of experience as a dam safety meteorologist and has worked on all components of regional precipitation frequency and PMP studies, from detailed storm analyses to developing statistical relationships for mapping of precipitation estimates across the United States and Canada. In addition to extreme precipitation studies, Alyssa supports R statistical programming and GIS development for DTN’s Hydrometeorology Professional Services team and is the forensic lead providing expert witness meteorological reports for litigation.

Piotr Kuraś, PE, PEng, RPF

Principal, Hydrologist

Northwest Hydraulic Consultants Ltd.


Piotr Kuraś is a principal at Northwest Hydraulic Consultants Ltd. (NHC), specializing in hydrology. He completed a MASc (hydrology) following on a BSF (forest operations) at the University of British Columbia (UBC), with a portion of his studies spent at the University of Canterbury. Prior to his time at NHC, Piotr worked as a research scientist at UBC establishing the field monitoring program for the Baker Creek watershed study, which was initiated to evaluate the hydrologic impacts of the Mountain Pine Beetle outbreak and subsequent forest harvesting on the watershed’s peak flow regime. He previously worked in forest engineering in British Columbia and forest management and fire fighting for the State of California. Piotr is currently registered as a professional engineer in British Columbia and Washington. For the Province of British Columbia’s Regional Flood Frequency Analysis project, Piotr was the consultant project lead and manager. He has over 16 years of experience as a hydrologist in field monitoring, hydrologic modelling, statistical analysis, and watershed assessments with these subdisciplines complementing his project studies in water supply, hydropower, and infrastructure design. Piotr’s most recent experience is in leading multi-disciplinary floodplain mapping projects.

Robert McLean, M.Sc, P.Eng.

Senior Dam Safety Engineer

Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations & Rural Development


Rob McLean is a senior engineer with the province of British Columbia’s Ministry of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development Dam Safety Section. He completed a B.Sc. in Agricultural Engineering at the University of Manitoba and a M.Sc. in Civil Engineering from Queen’s University at Kingston. Rob has over 20 years of hydrology, hydrogeology and geotechnical engineering project experience in the mining and water storage industries in Canada and at several international mining projects.

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