Reports of water pipelines failing can be sensational, particularly where the resulting flood damage provides spectacular footage for the 10 o’clock news. These failures, some of which are PCCP, also cost significant sums for repair and eventual pipeline replacement. PCCP tends to be of large diameter, making failures of this type of pipe relatively catastrophic and costly. To date, most research has been focused on PCCP inspection technologies and performance prediction in order to minimize the risk to utilities from such failures. This study is intended to provide more data useful for the prediction of PCCP service life.
The objectives of this project were to (1) develop a prestressed concrete cylinder pipe (PCCP) evaluation method, (2) determine the causes of PCCP failures, and (3) conduct a statistical analysis of PCCP failure data to provide service life prediction models.
This report presents data collected from this study, as well as expands upon previous studies on PCCP failures. The project began with a workshop with water utilities having a fair amount of PCCP in their systems, selected carefully to represent the range of conditions and variables that affect PCCP performance across North America. A database of 592 PCCP failures was developed and then statistically projected over the installed PCCP base of North America. The results provide a surprising indicator of failures and failure rate of PCCP. A timeline was developed to determine when PCCP was made, when it failed, and what events (such as changes to design and material standards) may have affected its performance. This timeline was also statistically analyzed against the failure data to provide performance prediction tools.
This report is available as a Pay-Per-View item only.