Papers > Mexicali Seismic Zones


ITRC Paper No. P 11-008.  A. Dennis Gracia, Charles M. Burt, and M. Paredes Vallejo

Irrigation Engineering in Seismic Zones – Mexicali Valley, Mexico

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On April 4, 2010 an earthquake of Richter magnitude 7.2 occurred with an epicenter south of Mexicali within the irrigated zone of Mexicali Valley. Extensive damage occurred to main and lateral canal structures, plus to field irrigation systems and the main drainage network. This paper describes the engineering for a new major irrigation water conveyance system to service the most heavily impacted zone of 80,000 acres. Considerations included identification of the causes of the damage, selection of canal versus pipeline, relocation costs of people along new routes, and improved flexibility of water delivery. Major investigations regarding soils, topography, etc. were conducted in a compressed timeline of only 4 months. Construction is anticipated to begin in December 2011. 


Dennis Gracia, A., C.M. Burt, and M. Paredes Vallejo. 2011. Irrigation Engineering in Seismic Zones – Mexicali Valley, Mexico. Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Irrigation and Drainage. United States Committee on Irrigation and Drainage (USCID).  San Diego, CA. Nov 15-18, 2011. 9 pp.

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