A CONNECTICUT DAM BREAKS.
At Danielson, Conn., on March 18, by the breaking of the sluicegates and their supporting posts of the dam of the new giant plant of the People’s Tramway company—one of the largest plants the country—two miles south of the town, late in the afternoon, a body of water that filled a reservoir two and one-half miles long was turned loose, and the works of the company, which operates street railroads running from Danielson to Worcester, placed in full operation only that very day were rendered useless for an indefinite period. The posts of the Watergate were carried aw ay, and a gap, ever widening, was opened in the embankment which retained the mass of water. It is figured that the loss of the machinery, which was within reach of the water, together with the destruction of the watergate and sluiceway, will approximate between $25,000 and $30,000 or over. It is thought that a quicksand underground was the cause of the accident.
The plant had been in process of construction for a numhei of mouths, and on the day of the disaster the works were to have been put into full operation. At 10 o’clock in the morning the water was turned on and at 4 o’clock in the afternoon the gate burst, and a volume of water, the pressure of which had been great enough to drive the 3,000-horse-power turbines, leaped through the opening into the sluiceway below. At noon on Wednesday still another of the. Nashuag dam’s bulkheads—that at the gateway—the fourth to go down, was carried away by the water, which was thus given a more dangerous sweep. At least two days would elapse before the rush of water through the breach could be stayed, and meanwhile the damage continued. The water, early on the afternoon of Wednesday, had dug its way fully twenty feet below the foundation bed. The efforts to stuy the destruction begun on Tuesday night were only partially successful, as the water from the great reservoir, two and a half miles in length, continued to undermine the raceway. A section of the dam itself was torn away by workmen to afford an outlet for the water and take away part of the force of the current in tho raceway, while another crew of men directed their efforts to filling in behind a part of the sluiceway wall, to protect buildings a short distance away. On Wednesday morning big granite blocks laid In cement were still being washed from the walls of the raceway by the force of the torrent.